COVID-19 Evidence Network to support Decision-making

To help health- and social-system leaders as they respond to unprecedented challenges related to the COVID-19 pandemic, the COVID-19 Evidence Network to support Decision-making (COVID-END) has come together rapidly in the past few weeks. COVID-END partners are drawn from diverse evidence-synthesis, technology assessment and guideline-development communities and have long track records of supporting decision-makers locally, nationally and internationally. Their activities span the full gamut of COVID-19 issues, including traditional infection prevention and control but also how to manage impacts on mental health and family violence, health- and social-care systems, education, employment, financial protection, food safety and security, government services, housing, public safety and justice, recreation and transportation. Their activities also span the full array of contexts where the COVID-19 pandemic is playing out, including low-, middle- and high-income countries.

COVID-END’s near-term priorities are to continuously maintain a guide to COVID-19 evidence sources, to help coordinate and avoid duplication in seven domains (such as digitizing key steps in evidence synthesis and guideline development), and to develop scalable models for supporting evidence-informed decision-making about COVID-19. The secretariat for COVID-END is being jointly co-led by the McMaster Health Forum and its partners at the Ottawa Hospital Research Institute.

If every group plays to their comparative advantages and works together to support coordination and avoid duplication, we can make a big difference in minimizing the human suffering being caused by COVID-19.