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Cochrane’s Toronto Colloquium, October 2020 -important announcement

pon, 05/04/2020 - 16:25

Dear Community colleagues,

With the deepest disappointment and regret I have to inform you that as a result of the continued spread and impact of the COVID-19 (coronavirus) across the world, Cochrane’s 27th Colloquium in Toronto, Canada, between 4th-7th October this year has been cancelled.

Cochrane’s Governing Board has concluded, with the agreement of Cochrane Canada, that the most appropriate decision is to cancel the Toronto Colloquium in its entirety for 2020 and hold it instead in the Canadian Fall of 2022 following Global Evidence Summit 2 taking the place of our annual Colloquium in Prague in 2021. We are looking at availability options at the same conference venue, the Westin Harbour Castle Hotel in Toronto, and we hope to secure dates within the coming weeks.

In addition, the Board also concluded that there should be no ‘virtual’ Colloquium or hybrid programme this year. Given the extraordinary circumstances we are all living through, the uncertainties around how the pandemic will develop and its ongoing impact, and the continuing pressures imposed on all Cochrane’s Groups and its Central Executive Team in working on our COVID-19 response as well as critical ‘Business as Usual’ activities, the Board decided that trying to plan any kind of event in the coming months would put unnecessary pressure on the organization.

However, we will edit and publish the accepted abstracts submitted for this year’s Colloquium in the Cochrane Library. The Colloquium organizers received 639 abstracts and the relevant committees will continue to review and respond to those submissions in the next few weeks. As a Central Executive Team, we will also provide you with opportunities for imaginative ideas on how parts of our community could easily organize ‘social events’ and how continued learning initiatives could be implemented to help bind us together, given that by October 2020 many members and supporters will not have met together for two years.

This is extremely disappointing news for all of us, but particularly for the Cochrane Canada organizers, the members of all of the Colloquium-related committees and many others who have been working so hard on the Colloquium preparations. The Board and the Senior Management Team would like to recognize the extraordinary efforts of Holger Schünemann, Dawn Cattapan and the rest of the Cochrane Canada team; and we are sure we will be able to build successfully on the work accomplished so far to ensure that the Toronto Colloquium in 2022 will be everything we anticipated it would be later this year: a world-class scientific event and a memorable gathering of the Cochrane community in one of the world’s most vibrant, multi-cultural cities.

Thank you for your ongoing support and commitment to Cochrane and its work; and I hope that all of you remain safe and well during these extraordinary times.

With my warmest best wishes,

Mark
Mark G. Wilson
Chief Executive Officer

Monday, May 4, 2020

UCL seeks Cochrane Complex Systematic Review Fellow

pet, 05/01/2020 - 11:11

Location: London
Salary:    £35,965 to £43,470 The appointment will be on UCL Grade 7, per annum, inclusive of London Allowance.
Hours: Full Time
Contract Type: Fixed-Term/Contract
Closes: 26th May 2020
Job Ref: 1866740

The Fellow will be supporting the activities and provide support to complex systematic reviews across the 5 groups of the Circulation and Breathing Network.

Performing and Provide support to complex systematic reviews, namely network meta-analyses, diagnostic accuracy reviews and prognostic reviews.

This position is open to anyone who meets the requirements described below and is funded until 06 February 2021 in the first instance.

The candidate should have proven experience on evidence of authorship of at least one network meta-analysis.

Previous experience of systematic reviews, ideally using Cochrane methodology.

Applicants should apply online. To access further details about the position and how to apply please click here

Applications will be reviewed by the Editor in Chief, the Deputy Editor in Chief, and the Network Senior Editors.

Interested candidates are welcome to contact  Dr Rui Providencia ( r.providencia@ucl.ac.uk ) for an informal discussion.

If you have any queries regarding the application process, please contact IHI HR ( ihi.hr@ucl.ac.uk).

The UCL Ways of Working for professional services supports colleagues to be successful and happy at UCL through sharing expectations around how we work – please see www.ucl.ac.uk/ways-of-working to find out more.

We particularly welcome applications from black and minority ethnic candidates as they are under-represented within UCL at this level.

We will consider applications to work on a part-time, flexible and job share basis wherever possible.

Our department holds an Athena SWAN Bronze award, in recognition of our commitment to advancing gender equality.

  • For further informationand how to apply, click here
  • Deadline for application: 26th May 2020
  • Interviews to be held on: tbc
Friday, May 1, 2020 Category: Jobs

Hand cleaning with ash for reducing the spread of viral and bacterial infections: a rapid review

pet, 04/24/2020 - 19:47

This new review is one of a series of rapid reviews that Cochrane contributors have prepared to inform the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic.

Some infectious diseases are spread by airborne droplets from coughs and sneezes, which can infect people who touch contaminated skin or surfaces. Washing hands with soap and water may prevent these diseases from spreading. People with no soap may use other materials like ash, mud, soil with or without water, or water alone, to clean their hands. Hand cleaning with ash (the solid remains from cooking stoves and fires) might work by rubbing away or inactivating the virus or bacteria. However, chemicals in the ash could also damage the skin.

If ash is an effective hand cleanser, it could reduce the spread of coronavirus (COVID‐19) and other infectious diseases in low‐income areas where soap is not widely available.

In this Cochrane Rapid Review, authors wanted to know whether people who use ash for hand cleaning are more or less likely to catch infectious diseases than people who use soap, water, mud or soil, or who do not clean their hands. They also wanted to know whether using ash causes unwanted effects, like sore hands or a rash.

Authors looked for studies that examined hand cleaning with ash compared with soap, mud, soil, water only or no hand cleaning. To answer these questions, the studies could include adults and children and take place anywhere.

COVID‐19 is spreading rapidly, so the authors needed to answer this question quickly. This meant they shortened some steps of the normal Cochrane Review process. They could not find the full texts of five potentially relevant studies, or contact study authors for additional data. Although they searched several databases, they may have missed some studies. The authors plan to include all relevant information in a future version of the review.

The authors identified 14 studies that assessed ash for hand cleaning. This review includes evidence published up to 26 March 2020. Only one small study directly compared people chosen at random to use ash or soap or other materials (randomised studies produce the best evidence). The studies included people of all ages and mainly took place in low‐income, rural communities. Six studies provided information to help answer our question.

One study investigated children who had been to hospital with diarrhoea compared with children who had not. Study authors looked at the hand washing area in the children’s houses to see how they cleaned their hands. They found that families that used ash for hand cleaning made a similar number of hospital visits for children with diarrhoea as those families that used soap.

Another study investigated whether women with unusual vaginal itching or discharge were more likely to clean their hands with ash than women who had not experienced such symptoms. They found that women who used ash and water for hand cleaning were as likely to experience vaginal itching or discharge as those women who used soap.

Four studies measured bacteria on hands after using ash, soap, water, mud or no hand cleaning. The authors are uncertain about the effect of ash compared with other materials for hand cleaning on bacteria on people’s hands because the studies used unreliable methods and their results were unclear.

None of the studies provided information about the severity of infectious diseases, whether people used ash or another material consistently, the number of deaths, or unwanted effects due to hand cleaning with ash.

The certainty (confidence) of the evidence was limited because the authors found few studies; those they did find had unreliable methods and different kinds of participants, and none of the studies we found reliably examined whether participants got infections.

The authors are uncertain whether hand cleaning with ash compared with hand cleaning with soap, water, mud, soil or no hand cleaning stops or reduces the spread of viral or bacterial infections. They do not know if hand cleaning with ash causes unwanted effects.

 

Tuesday, April 28, 2020

University of Central Lancashire seeks Managing Editor

pet, 04/24/2020 - 10:54

Job title : Managing Editor
Job reference : REQ004899
Application closing date : 21/05/2020
Location : Preston Campus, UK
Salary : Grade: I (£44045 - £51034)

The School of Medicine wishes to appoint a Managing Editor who will be based at UCLAN Preston campus but will be expected to work collaboratively with the wider study team internationally employing IT solutions to achieve this. This role will involve the primary managing editor role for the Cochrane Gut group satellite in UCLAN. The group has a portfolio of 120 reviews, 40 protocols and 25 titles at present. This covers IBD management in adults and children, excluding microbiome focussed works. Additionally, the children  0 functional bowel portfolio. Through collaboration with the Cochrane Gut group in Canada, we will also lead editorial for all reviews authored by their editors and vice versa, involving work on a wider Gut portfolio.
 
There will be a significant volume of research output and scholarly content to be produced by the post holder themselves, as well as facilitating the wider team. Expect 30-40 full reviews per annum to be completing editorial as a minimum during this period of rapid updating and reprioritisation, as well as 20-30 protocols, associated positions pieces, editorials and patient / servicer user materials. The post holder will have to work highly efficiently, communicating in a timely and effective manner with the CEs and colleagues. There will also likely be educational and dissemination activities with various stakeholders and patients on a regular basis.
 
With experience of systematic review work and specific Cochrane experience, you will have knowledge and understanding of the work of Cochrane Collaboration and the nature of systematic reviews. Experience of Cochrane editorial roles and dissemination and presentation of such works is also essential.

You will have postgraduate training in an appropriate field to at least Masters level, including epidemiology, public health and medical specialities. A PhD or Professional Doctorate qualification are not essential requirements, but would be desirable.

You must possess excellent communication skills; have an ability to work within a multidisciplinary team and show initiative and innovation. With a professional and flexible approach, you will have a commitment to the missions and values of the University.

Informal enquiries are welcomed - please contact Morris Gordon, Head of Professionalism and Careers, via email in the first instance mgordon@uclan.ac.uk

Applicants need to meet all essential criteria on the person specification to be considered for interview. This position is based in Preston with travel required.
 

Friday, April 24, 2020 Category: Jobs

University of Central Lancashire seeks Information Specialist

pet, 04/24/2020 - 10:34

Job title : Information Specialist (Part time)
Job reference : REQ004898
Application closing date : 21/05/2020
Location : Preston Campus
Salary : Grade: F (£25941-30046) pro-rata

The School of Medicine wishes to appoint an Information Specialist who will be based at UCLAN Preston campus but will be expected to work collaboratively with the wider study team internationally employing IT solutions to achieve this. The post holder will provide Cochrane review authors with comprehensive literature searching support; maintaining and developing the Group's' Specialised Register within the Cochrane Register of Studies (CRS). You will also contribute to the development of CENTRAL and support the output of high-quality Cochrane reviews working closely with the Managing Editor and Coordinating Editors.

You will have a first degree or postgraduate qualifications in Library/Information Management and good analytical and IT skills. You will have previous experience of searching online bibliographic databases and document management such as MEDLINE and Embase. A high level of editing and writing skills is also essential to this role. You will have experience of undertaking systematic reviews and health technology assessments.

You must possess excellent communication skills; have an ability to work within a multidisciplinary team and have excellent planning and organisational skills. With a professional and flexible approach, you will have a commitment to the missions and values of the University.

Informal enquiries are welcomed - please contact Morris Gordon, Professor of Evidence Synthesis and Systematic Review, via email in the first instance mgordon@uclan.ac.uk

Applicants need to meet all essential criteria on the person specification to be considered for interview. This position is based in Preston, UK.

Please apply online via www.uclan.ac.uk/jobs or by contacting Human Resources on 01772 892324 and quoting the reference number. CVs will not be considered unless accompanied by a completed application form.

Applicants need to meet all essential criteria on the person specification to be considered for interview. This position is based in Preston.

Friday, April 24, 2020 Category: Jobs

Cochrane seeks - Community Support Officer

čet, 04/23/2020 - 09:03

Specifications: Part time (0.4 FTE), 15 hours per week
Salary: £30,000 FTE per annum
Location: Flexible – coverage of UK morning timezone preferred
Application Closing Date: 20th May 2020

This role is an exciting opportunity to use your experience to make a difference in the field of health care research.

Cochrane’s Community Support team is the first point of contact for the international Cochrane community. We provide a timely and coordinated support service, resolving queries covering a broad range of areas including Cochrane Account login, Cochrane review software (e.g. RevMan Web, Archie), membership, training, websites, sales and research. The Community Support Officers are the day-to-day face of the team answering many queries and escalating complex enquiries appropriately.

This team sits within the People Services department, which provides all people-focused services within  Cochrane, including inclusive learning programmes, platforms to enable participation in diverse Cochrane activities, human resources, consumer engagement and a wide range of internal and public-facing support services.

We are looking for a self-motivated and highly organised individual who is able to work effectively and collaboratively with a diverse range of contacts across the world.  The successful candidate will also have:

  • Experience in providing excellent customer service, including excellent interpersonal communication skills; a courteous, professional manner; and the ability to manage complaints with diplomacy and resilience
  • Proactive and flexible approach to learning new systems and products in order to provide the best possible customer support
  • Experience with software and systems related to customer service, such as HappyFox, Jira, SugarCRM and MailChimp
  • Excellent English-language communication skills (both verbal and written), including experience in communicating technical content, tailoring standard communications to individual requirements, and working with people from a variety of cultural and linguistic backgrounds
  • Good attention to detail to ensure that community members always receive accurate information
  • Experience in working collaboratively within complex organisations, including diverse and geographically-dispersed staff, collaborator and stakeholder groups across different time zones
  • Self-motivated and results-oriented, with excellent organisation and time management skills, including the ability to work to deadlines as part of an interdependent team working remotely
  • Familiarity with and commitment to Cochrane’s mission and values
  • Openness to continuous professional development and training

Cochrane is a global, independent network of health practitioners, researchers, patient advocates and others, responding to the challenge of making vast amounts of research evidence useful for informing decisions about health. We do this by synthesizing research findings to produce the best available evidence on what can work, what might harm and where more research is needed. Our work is recognised as the international gold standard for high quality, trusted information.

If you would like to apply for this position, please send a CV along with a supporting statement to recruitment@cochrane.org with “Community Support Officer” in the subject line. The supporting statement should indicate why you are applying for the post, and how far you meet the requirements for the post outlined in the job description using specific examples.  List your experience, achievements, knowledge, personal qualities, and skills which you feel are relevant to the post.

  • For further information, please download the full job description from here
  • Deadline for applications: 20th May 2020 (12 midnight GMT)
  • Interviews to be held on: From 1st June 2020 (Remotely)
Thursday, April 23, 2020

Cochrane France leads collaborative COVID-19 living evidence project

pon, 04/20/2020 - 20:09

Collaborators from at least seven countries have compiled living evidence related to COVID-19 for use by clinicians, policymakers, researchers, guideline developers. Led by collaborators from Cochrane France, Cochrane Germany, Cochrane Ireland, the Cochrane Bias Methods Group and others, this project brings together the latest evidence related to COVID-19, presenting data on trials registered all over the world, as well as living evidence synthesis of results from these trials. The project provides one location for decision makers to access information on COVID trials and synthesized results that is frequently updated by independent researchers with expertise in evidence synthesis. The project includes two main parts: living mapping of ongoing research followed by living synthesis of study results as soon as they are available.

Living map of ongoing research

To provide a living map of ongoing research, the research team searches clinical trial registries and records data to compile registered study characteristics. This feeds into their data visualizations and mapping of registered studies developed in collaboration with research teams from the CNRS. These provide easy ways to see the status of COVID-19 studies based on country in which they are taking place, study design, disease severity in study participants, and type of treatment being studied, as well as network maps of these studies.

This is useful for researchers planning clinical trials, to easily see where there is a gap in evidence, or for research funders deciding where to dedicate resources for future clinical trials. 

Living synthesis of study results

The living systematic reviews of COVID-19 study results completed by the project focuses on three areas: pharmacologic treatments, ICU supportive treatments, and preventive treatments. For each, as results are available, the team synthesizes these results, providing a list of treatment comparisons, a summary of the evidence for that comparison, and a detailed description of primary studies, including a risk of bias assessment. 

Soon they hope to have a full Summary of Findings table available for each treatment comparison. Particularly useful for clinicians and healthcare decision-makers, the team’s goal is to update these living systematic review of study results twice per week. They will also share their database to allow researchers, decision makers, guideline developers perform their own analysis.

Isabelle Boutron and Philippe Ravaud, project leaders, say of the project: “We are proud of the interdisciplinary and international nature of this collaboration, which we believe provides an important source of high-quality synthesis of all COVID-19 evidence underway.”

Karla Soares-Weiser, Editor in Chief of the Cochrane Library, says, “We are impressed by the work that this project has produced so far. As the COVID-19 pandemic continues and global research on this disease increases daily, there is an ever-growing need for living evidence synthesis. We are pleased to be collaborating with this team, working together to continue responding to this crisis and planning our next steps for living evidence synthesis.”

 

Monday, April 20, 2020

Factors that influence whether healthcare workers follow infection prevention and control guidelines for respiratory infectious diseases

pon, 04/20/2020 - 10:53

Coronavirus (COVID-19) is a new respiratory infectious disease that has spread quickly throughout the world. Healthcare workers treating patients with COVID-19 are at risk of infection themselves through droplets from coughs, sneezes or other body fluids from infected patients and contaminated surfaces.

This review is one of a series of rapid reviews that Cochrane contributors have prepared to inform the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic. The aim of this Cochrane review of qualitative research (“qualitative evidence synthesis”) is to explore factors that influence whether healthcare workers follow infection prevention and control (IPC) guidelines for respiratory infectious diseases. To answer this question, the authors searched for and analysed qualitative studies about this topic.

Healthcare workers point to several factors that influence their ability and willingness to follow IPC guidelines when managing respiratory infectious diseases. These include factors linked to the guideline itself and how it is communicated, support from managers, workplace culture, training, physical space, access to and trust in personal protective equipment (PPE), and a desire to deliver good patient care. The review also highlights the importance of including all facility staff, including support staff, when implementing IPC guidelines.

When respiratory infectious diseases become widespread, such as during the COVID-19 pandemic, healthcare workers’ use of IPC strategies become even more important. These strategies include the use of PPE such as masks, face shields, gloves and gowns; separating patients with respiratory infections from others; and stricter cleaning routines. Exploring how healthcare workers view and experience these strategies can help authorities and healthcare facilities learn more about how best to support healthcare workers to implement them.

The authors found 36 relevant studies and sampled 20 of these studies for analysis. Ten studies were from Asia, four from Africa, four from North America and two from Australia. The studies explored the views and experiences of nurses, doctors and other healthcare workers when dealing with SARS, H1N1, MERS, tuberculosis, or seasonal influenza. Most of these healthcare workers worked in hospitals; others worked in primary and community care settings.
 

The review pointed to several factors that influenced healthcare workers’ adherence to IPC guidance. The following factors are based on findings assessed as of moderate to high confidence.

  • Healthcare workers felt unsure when local guidelines were long, unclear or did not match national or international guidelines. They could feel overwhelmed because local guidelines were constantly changing. They also described how IPC strategies led to increased workloads and fatigue, for instance because they had to use PPE and take on additional cleaning. Healthcare workers described how their responses to IPC guidelines were affected by the level of support they felt they received from their management team.
  • Clear communication about IPC guidelines was seen as vital. But healthcare workers pointed to a lack of training about the infection itself and about how to use PPE. They also thought it was a problem when training was not compulsory.
  • Having enough space to isolate patients was seen as vital. Too few isolation rooms, anterooms (small rooms leading from a corridor into an isolation room) and shower facilities was a problem. Other important practical measures described by healthcare workers included minimising overcrowding, fast-tracking infected patients, restricting visitors, and providing easy access to handwashing facilities.
  • A lack of PPE, or PPE that was of poor quality, was a serious concern for healthcare workers and managers. They also highlighted the need to adjust the amount of supplies as infection outbreaks continued.
  • Healthcare workers believed that they followed IPC guidance more closely when they saw the value of it. Other healthcare workers felt motivated to follow the guidance because of fear of infecting themselves and their families, or because they felt responsible for their patients. Some healthcare workers found it difficult to use masks and other equipment when it made patients feel isolated, frightened or stigmatised. Healthcare workers also found masks and other equipment uncomfortable to use. The workplace culture could also influence whether healthcare workers followed IPC guidelines or not.
  • Across many of the findings, healthcare workers pointed to the importance of including all staff, including cleaning staff, porters, kitchen staff and other support staff when implementing IPC guidelines.
Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Cochrane Review confirms effectiveness of MMR vaccines

pet, 04/17/2020 - 13:17

New evidence published in the Cochrane Library today finds MMR, MMRV and MMR+V vaccines are effective and that they are not associated with increased risk of autism.
 
Measles, mumps, rubella and varicella (also known as chickenpox) are infectious diseases caused by viruses. They are most common in children and young adults, and can lead to potentially fatal illnesses, disabilities and death. Measles remains one of the leading causes of childhood death around the globe. Rubella is also dangerous for pregnant women, as it can cause miscarriage or harm to unborn babies.
 
The MMR (measles, mumps, rubella) is a combined vaccine that protects against all three infections. Clinicians can vaccinate against varicella (chickenpox) by a combined MMR and varicella vaccine (MMRV) or giving it separately at the same time (MMR+V).

‘We wanted to assess the effectiveness, safety, and long- and short-term harms of the MMR vaccines in this updated review which was last updated in 2012,’ explains lead author, Dr Carlo Di Pietrantonj of Italy’s Regional Epidemiology Unit SeREMI. ‘From the 138 randomised and non-randomised studies included in the review, 51 studies (10 million children) assessed how effective the vaccines were at preventing the diseases, and 87 studies (13 million children) assessed harms’



In terms of effectiveness the review found:

  • Measles: one dose of vaccine was 95% effective in preventing measles. Based on the data analysed in the review, the number of cases would fall from 7% in unvaccinated children to under 0.5% in children who receive one dose of the vaccine. After two doses, effectiveness was similar at around 96%.
  • Mumps: one dose of vaccine was 72% effective in preventing mumps. This rose to 86% after two doses. From data analysed in the review. the number of cases would fall from 7.4% in unvaccinated children to 1% in children were vaccinated with two doses. 

The results for rubella and chickenpox also showed that that vaccines are effective. After one dose of vaccine was 89% effective in preventing rubella, and one study found that after 10 years the MMRV vaccine was 95% effective at preventing chickenpox infection. If exposed to chickenpox, 5 out of 100 vaccinated children would catch it.

‘In terms of safety, we know from previous studies all around the world that the risks posed by these diseases far outweigh those of the vaccines administered to prevent them,’ says Dr Di Pietrantonj. ‘In this review, we wanted to look at evidence for specific harms that have been linked with these vaccines in public debate - often without rigorous scientific evidence as a basis.’
 
In relation to the controversy arising from false claims linking vaccination and autism, the review summarises evidence from two studies with 1,194,764 children. Diagnosed cases of autism were similar in vaccinated and unvaccinated children.

Two further studies with 1,071,088 children find no evidence for any association between the MMR vaccines and encephalitis, inflammatory bowel disease, Crohn's disease, cognitive delay, type 1 diabetes, asthma, dermatitis/eczema, hay fever, leukaemia, multiple sclerosis, gait disturbance and bacterial or viral infections.
 
‘We judged the certainty of the evidence for the effectiveness of the MMR vaccine to be moderate. Although the studies that provide these data are not randomised the effects are very large. The certainty of the evidence for the varicella vaccine, based on an RCT, was judged to be high.’ says Di Pietrantonj. 

‘Overall we think that existing evidence on the safety and effectiveness of MMR/MMRV/MMR+V vaccines supports their use for mass immunisation. Campaigns aimed at global eradication should assess epidemiological and socioeconomic situations of the countries as well as the capacity to achieve high vaccination coverage. More evidence is needed to assess whether the protective effect of MMR/MMRV could wane with time since immunisation.’

Monday, April 20, 2020

Cochrane calls to support WHO in its response to COVID-19

sri, 04/15/2020 - 20:33

The COVID-19 pandemic has shown the connectedness and vulnerability of today’s world, and the need for solidarity and open collaboration across borders. Governments, health care professionals and researchers around the world are seeking answers to questions related to the treatment of patients, and how best to protect health care workers as well as the public at large. The World Health Organization (WHO) plays an essential role in supporting its Member States in the response to the pandemic, and in providing evidence-informed guidance to politicians and healthcare professionals on questions they are grappling with on a daily basis.

The announcement by the US government this week that it is suspending its member state contribution to the WHO is deeply disappointing. Cochrane believes nothing should be done now that undermines the collective action required for the world to overcome this major challenge to global health. While it is vital to monitor closely the behaviour and decisions of the WHO and other international institutions, and continually hold them to account, this is not the time for cutting funding to the WHO, which will damage its response to COVID-19 with potentially huge public health consequences, particularly for vulnerable people in Low- and Middle-Income Countries. 

Cochrane is a global leader in the production of high-quality evidence to inform health decision making and a non-state-actor in official relations with WHO. During the current crisis, Cochrane is working closely with WHO to support its response to COVID-19. We are producing rapid reviews to answer priority questions related to the pandemic in a timely manner, thus supporting the development of WHO guidance based on the best available evidence. 

We continue to support the WHO and condemn the personal attacks being leveled against its staff who are working hard - under extremely difficult circumstances - to tackle this crisis. We call on other members of the research community, civil society organizations and governments to do the same. The time for reflection and learning about the pandemic will come, and that evaluation should be done in a transparent and evidence-informed manner. In the meantime, collective action and mutual collaboration and support are the only ways to ensure that as many lives as possible are saved.

Martin Burton,  Co-Chair, Cochrane Governing Board

Catherine Marshall, Co-Chair, Cochrane Governing Board

Mark Wilson, CEO, Cochrane

Karla Soares-Weiser, Editor in Chief, Cochrane Library

Friday, April 17, 2020

Fast-Tracked Update: Protective clothes and equipment for healthcare workers to prevent coronavirus and other highly infectious diseases

sri, 04/15/2020 - 04:29

Cochrane has published a fast-tracked update to a 2019 Cochrane Review on personal protective equipment for healthcare workers. Published today by Cochrane Work is 'Personal protective equipment for preventing highly infectious diseases due to exposure to contaminated body fluids in healthcare staff.'

We know that basic science research and innovation will be vital in containing and mitigating the effects of the rapidly evolving COVID-19 pandemic. Cochrane is responding  promptly to this unprecedented global health crisis by answering the time-sensitive needs of health decision makers, as fast as possible while simultaneously ensuring that the scientific imperative of methodological rigor is satisfied. Part of this is making sure that relevant Cochrane systematic reviews are up-to-date with emerging evidence.  This review on personal protective equipment was first published in 2016, updated in 2019, and now the second fast-tracked update brings the latest evidence into the analysis.

Healthcare workers are at risk of serious infections such as coronavirus (COVID-19), severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and Ebola virus. One way of preventing infection is to use personal protective equipment (PPE), such as protective clothing, gloves, masks and breathing equipment (respirators), and goggles. This prevents the worker from becoming contaminated with droplets from coughs, sneezes, or other body fluids from infected patients and from contaminated surfaces. It is unclear which type of equipment protects best. Contamination also often occurs when PPE is removed. We do not know the safest way of taking off PPE, and we do not know the best way to train workers.

This fast-tracked update from Cochrane Work found 24 studies with 2278 participants. The studies compared types of protective clothing, modifications of protective clothing design, ways to put it on and take it off, and different ways to train healthcare workers in its use. Eighteen of the studies used a fluorescent marker or a harmless virus or bacteria to simulate what happens when healthcare workers are exposed in hospitals or other healthcare settings. All studies had either an unclear or a high risk of bias.



Various types of clothing compared

Covering more parts of the body may lead to better protection. This comes usually at the cost of more difficult donning or doffing and less user comfort. It may lead to even more contamination. The use of a powered, air-purifying respirator with coverall may protect better than a N95 mask and gown but is more difficult to put on. A long gown may be the best choice of protection and is easy to remove. Coveralls may be more difficult to remove. Gowns may protect better against contamination than aprons. Protective clothing made of more breathable material may not lead to more contamination, but it may have greater user satisfaction. Contamination was common in half of the studies despite improved PPE.

Modifications compared to standard protective clothing design
The following modification of standard protective clothing design may lead to less contamination: gowns with gloves attached at the cuff that were taken off together, better coverage of the glove-gown interface and gowns with tighter fit at the neck. Also adding tabs to gloves and face masks to grip when removing the protective clothing may lead to less contamination. One study did not find that there were fewer errors in putting gowns on or off correctly modification.

Various methods of removing clothing compared
The following additions to protective clothing or changes to the guidance for their use may lead to less contamination: following CDC guidance for apron or gown removal compared to individual removal, one step removal of gown and gloves, using two pairs of gloves, instructions for doffing contaminated protective clothing, sanitizing gloves with bleach or quaternary ammonium (but not alcohol).

Active training
Face to face training and computer simulation of the use of protective clothing led to fewer errors compared to educational material only. In one study, participants who watched a video had better scores when tested compared to a traditional lecture on the use of protective clothing.

Certainty of the evidence
We judged the certainty of the evidence to be low to very low because of limitations in the studies, the studies simulated real infection, and they had a small number of participants.

What do we still need to find out?
There were no studies on the effects of goggles or face shields. Researchers need to agree on the best way to simulate exposure. Then, more simulation studies are needed with at least 60 participants, preferably using exposure to a harmless virus, to find out which type and combination of protective equipment is most protective. The best way to remove protective clothing after use is also unclear. We also need studies to find out which training works best in the long-term. Healthcare staff exposed to highly infectious diseases should have their personal protective equipment registered and be followed for their risk of infection. We urge hospitals to organise more studies and register and record the type of PPE used by their workers to provide more urgently needed real-life information.

Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Cochrane International Mobility - Emma Persad

uto, 04/14/2020 - 12:10

Cochrane is made up of 11,000 members and over 67,000 supporters come from more than 130 countries, worldwide. Our volunteers and contributors are researchers, health professionals, patients, carers, people passionate about improving health outcomes for everyone, everywhere.

Getting involved in Cochrane’s work means becoming part of a global community. The Cochrane International Mobility programme connects successful applicants with a placement in a host Cochrane Group, learning more about the production, use, and knowledge translation of Cochrane reviews. The prgramme offers opportunities for learning and training not only for participants but also for host staff.

In this series, we profile those that have participated in the Cochrane International Mobility Program and learn more about their experiences.

Name: Emma Persad
Location: Austria
Cochrane International Mobility location: Cochrane Sweden

How did you first learn about Cochrane?
Cochrane Austria is fortunately located on campus at the Department of Evidence-based Medicine and Evaluation at Danube University Krems. Due to the convenience of having the Centre so close and the importance of teaching evidence-based medicine to medical students, Cochrane’s methods, work, and strict standards have been taught extensively since the first year of the program.

What was your experience with Cochrane International Mobility?
I mentioned my interest in pursuing neonatology with the Cochrane Austria team and they recommended contacting Cochrane Sweden to see if they had any projects I could get involved in, as a large part of their focus is on neonatology. Cochrane Austria had also hosted a student from Cochrane Sweden in 2017, so I was aware of the CIM program and the unique opportunity it presented. I was lucky enough to get involved in a new project focused on minimizing blood loss in neonates with an international and multi-disciplinary team and we’ve been working hard on it for the last few months. Due to my full-time studies and the current COVID-19 situation, I haven’t had the chance to visit the Centre yet, but I hope to do so in the near future.

What are you doing now in relation to your Cochrane International Mobility experience?
We are still working on the review and meeting regularly online as we’ve all been forced to work from home. Luckily, completing a virtual CIM term has been very easy with the support of the team and the access we have to technology. After this review is done, I hope to continue collaborating with Cochrane Sweden on neonatology reviews and stay involved in Cochrane throughout my career.

Do you have any words of advice to anyone conserving a Cochrane International Mobility experience?
It is so important for any health professional to have experience with both research and clinical work, and Cochrane is the ideal place to gain insight into high-quality research and evidence-based medicine. Working with such an international and professionally like-minded team has been an incredibly inspiring experience and anyone considering participating in CIM should go for it!

 

 

Tuesday, April 14, 2020

Cochrane seeks - Cochrane US Network Coordinator

čet, 04/09/2020 - 16:07

Specifications: Part time (0.6 FTE), 1-year secondment or consultancy contract with the potential to be extended
Salary: Competitive
Location: Flexible location within US or with host institution if agreed as a secondment
Application Closing Date: 3rd May 2020

This role is an exciting opportunity to use your experience to make a difference in the field of health care research.

The successful candidate will support the development of the Cochrane US Network. Working with a US-Network Executive Committee, the US Network Members and Cochrane’s Central Executive, the Cochrane US Network Coordinator will facilitate and support the Network to achieve its strategic and operational objectives.

We are looking for a self-motivated and highly organised individual who is able to work effectively and collaboratively with a diverse range of contacts across the world.  The successful candidate will also have:

  • Be US based. Could be independent or affiliated with a US Network member institution.
  • Experience in working in a networked or coalition setting.
  • Experience facilitating groups in planning and consensus.
  • Demonstrable experience in working with various partner organizations.
  • Understanding of the US health, public health and research environment.
  • Experience in developing funding applications and engaging with funding agencies.
  • Strong organizational skills, ability to manage a diverse workload.
  • Ability to work independently and proactively under general direction, willing and able to work in a self- directed way.
  • Excellent interpersonal and communication skills, with a natural flair for networking.
  • Time management skills and ability to work flexible hours as needed.
  • Experience related to all aspects of the planning and organising of meetings, workshops and conferences.
  • Willingness to travel nationally and internationally when required.

Cochrane is a global, independent network of health practitioners, researchers, patient advocates and others, responding to the challenge of making vast amounts of research evidence useful for informing decisions about health. We do this by synthesizing research findings to produce the best available evidence on what can work, what might harm and where more research is needed. Our work is recognised as the international gold standard for high quality, trusted information.

If you would like to apply for this position, please send a CV along with a supporting statement to recruitment@cochrane.org with “Cochrane US Network Coordinator” in the subject line.  The supporting statement should indicate why you are applying for the post, and how far you meet the requirements for the post outlined in the job description using specific examples.  List your experience, achievements, knowledge, personal qualities, and skills which you feel are relevant to the post.

  • For further information, please download the full job description from here
  • Deadline for applications: 3rd May 2020 (12 midnight GMT)
  • Interviews to be held on: From 13th May 2020 (Remotely)
Thursday, April 9, 2020 Category: Jobs

Cochrane seeks - Multi-language Programme Manager

čet, 04/09/2020 - 11:49

Specifications: Full time, Permanent
Salary: £48,000 FTE per annum
Location: Flexible but preferably based with one of Cochrane’s regional offices (London, Freiburg, Copenhagen)
Application Closing Date: 3rd May 2020 (At Midnight GMT)

We are looking for a highly organized, non-native English speaker or bilingual person who can work effectively and collaboratively with diverse people across the world. This job is an exciting, varied, and demanding opportunity to join Cochrane’s Knowledge Translation Department using your experience to make a difference in supporting the use of evidence in healthcare decision-making.

Cochrane’s multi-language programme aims to make Cochrane health evidence accessible and to enable the use of our evidence by people in different linguistic and cultural contexts. We are currently translating into 16 languages on a regular basis, see more information here: https://www.cochrane.org/translation. The Multi-language Programme Manager leads the implementation and evaluation of Cochrane’s multi-language strategy as part of Cochrane’s organizational strategy and in line with its Knowledge Translation Framework.

The Manager is responsible for:

  • supporting Cochrane’s translation teams in their knowledge translation activities;
  • the development of workflows, technical infrastructure and policies for translations of Cochrane content;
  • representing multi-language matters across Cochrane and advising on needs and dependencies to ensure they are considered and integrated in organizational projects and programmes;
  • supporting innovation, research and product development related to translation;representing Cochrane’s multi-language activities externally.


The successful candidate will bring the following background, experience and competencies:

  • Education or work experience in translation, linguistics, communications, knowledge translation or a related field;
  • A non-native English speaker or bilingual person who can fully grasp the needs of non-English speakers, proficient in English and at least one other language; willing to and interested in getting familiar with the particularities of various languages;
  • Proven competence and willingness to establish and maintain effective working relationships with people from a variety of cultural and linguistic backgrounds and located around the world;
  • Excellent project management and analytical skills, able to deal with competing priorities and a high workload effectively;
  • Able to see activities in a broad context, manage dependencies, and integrate with strategic and operational objectives, but also someone who is process- and results-oriented, a hands-on problem-solver, working to deadlines and with attention to detail;
  • Able to motivate and engage others, to provide sound advice, training and support; and to hold people accountable;
  • Excellent communication skills (spoken, written and presentational), and able to communicate with different audiences;
  • Experience in, or knowledge of, content and website localization, translation workflows, software and quality evaluation, machine translation, and volunteer engagement;
  • Comfortable getting familiar with and using various software and technology systems;
  • Experience acting as subject matter expert or product owner in technology development representing stakeholder needs and managing stakeholder expectations; or experience planning, coordinating and rolling out software, website or user interface development.

Cochrane is a global, independent network of health practitioners, researchers, patient advocates and others, responding to the challenge of making vast amounts of research evidence useful for informing decisions about health. We do this by synthesizing research findings to produce the best available evidence on what can work, what might harm and where more research is needed. Our work is recognized as the international gold standard for high quality, trusted health information.

If you would like to apply for this position, please send a CV and a personal supporting statement to recruitment@cochrane.org with “Multi-language Programme Manager” in the subject line. Your letter should indicate why you are applying for the post, and how you meet the requirements for the post using specific examples. List your experience, achievements, knowledge, personal qualities, and skills which are relevant to the post.

  • For further information, please download the full job description from here.
  • Deadline for applications: 3RD May 2020 (12 midnight GMT)
  • Interviews to be held on: From 11th May 2020 onwards
Thursday, April 9, 2020 Category: Jobs

How effective is quarantine alone or in combination with other public health measures to control coronavirus (COVID-19)?

sri, 04/08/2020 - 12:55

Today, Cochrane publishes a new Rapid Review assessing the effectiveness of quarantine during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The review summarizes evidence available from modelling studies that show how quarantining affects the spread of COVID-19. The studies included in the review consistently conclude that quarantine can play a role in controlling the spread of coronavirus SARS-CoV-2. While early implementation of quarantine and its combination with other public health measures helps to ensure effectiveness, key uncertainties remain as to how these measures can best be adopted and when they can be relaxed.

Currently, there are no effective medicines or vaccines available to treat or prevent COVID-19. For this reason, restrictive public health measures such as isolation, physical distancing, and quarantine have been used in a number of countries to reduce transmission of the virus. Isolation refers to the separation of people with symptoms from others, whereas quarantine is the restriction of people who have no symptoms, but who have had contact with people with confirmed or suspected infection. Quarantine can be implemented on a voluntary basis or can be legally enforced by authorities, and it may be applied at an individual, group, or community level.

This Rapid Review was done in a short space of time as part of Cochrane’s organizational effort to meet the need for up-to-date summaries of evidence to support decision-making in combating the effects and impact of COVID-19.

Cochrane researchers used abbreviated systematic review methods to address the following questions as quickly as possible:

  • Is quarantine of asymptomatic individuals who were in contact with a confirmed or suspected case of COVID-19 effective to control the COVID-19 outbreak?
  • Are there differences in the effectiveness of quarantine in different settings?
  • How effective is quarantine when combined with other interventions, such as case isolation, school closures, or antiviral drugs, in reducing transmission, incidence of diseases, and death?
  • Is quarantine of individuals coming from a country with a declared COVID-19 outbreak effective in controlling the COVID-19 outbreak?

The authors identified 29 relevant studies. Of these, 10 focused on COVID-19, 15 focused on related evidence on SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome), two focused on SARS and other viruses, and two focused on MERS (Middle East respiratory syndrome). The 10 studies addressing COVID-19 were all modelling studies simulating outbreak scenarios in China, the UK, and South Korea, and on a cruise ship.

The COVID-19 modelling studies included in the review consistently report a benefit of quarantine measures and show similar findings from studies on SARS and MERS.

The authors of this Cochrane Review concluded that:

  • Quarantine of people exposed to confirmed cases may avert high proportions of infections and deaths compared to no measures.
  • The effect of quarantine of travelers from a country with a declared outbreak to avert transmission and deaths was small.
  • In general, the combination of quarantine with other prevention and control measures, such as school closures, travel restrictions, and physical distancing, had a greater effect on the reduction of transmissions, cases which required critical care beds, and deaths compared with quarantine alone.
  • More comprehensive and early implementation of prevention and control measures may be more effective in containing the COVID-19 outbreak.

The researchers rate their confidence in the results to be low or very low because of the way that the models used in the studies were developed. They are based on assumptions about the true prevalence of infection, which could be updated when we know more about this aspect of the COVID-19 pandemic.



However, the authors also stress the importance of using information about the local context in deciding on how measures such as quarantining should be adopted and when they can be lifted. Lead author Barbara Nußbaumer-Streit said “This Cochrane Review shows that while quarantine may help in containing the COVID-19 outbreak, decision-makers will need to constantly monitor the outbreak situation locally in order to maintain the best possible balance of measures in place, and that there is an acceptable trade-off between benefits and harms.”

Cochrane Editor in Chief, Karla Soares-Weiser, added, “The spread of coronavirus presents a major challenge for governments all over the world. Cochrane has a duty to provide the best available evidence to support policy-making, balancing rigour with speed. We have fast-tracked this review because it addresses one of the highest priority questions we have identified. This review is particularly helpful for decision makers looking for evidence to inform their decisions around the implementation of quarantine measures.”

 

Wednesday, April 8, 2020

Cochrane launches new Study Register to support rapid evidence synthesis in the global challenge to combat COVID-19

pon, 04/06/2020 - 19:42

Today, Cochrane announces the launch of its COVID-19 Study Register – a one-stop shop for primary research studies on COVID-19. 

The aim of the register is to support rapid evidence synthesis by all systematic review producers, including Cochrane's work on Rapid Reviews in response to COVID-19. The register helps systematic reviewers prioritize topics, identify available evidence, and produce urgently needed reviews for front-line health professionals, public health policymakers, and research teams developing new therapeutic, diagnostic, and preventive interventions for COVID-19. 

The new COVID-19 Study Register will be continually updated with human studies on COVID-19. It is the latest initiative by Cochrane, a global network of health-researchers, producing high-quality, relevant, and up-to-date synthesized research evidence in response to COVID-19.

Within weeks of launch, the COVID-19 Study Register, which already consists of more than 1000 studies, will develop with more study references from additional sources, including the addition of PICO metadata to enhance discoverability of the studies in the register. It will also develop new features such as surveillance alerts to assist identification of evidence arising from the growing global response of ongoing health research about COVID-19.

Cochrane’s Editor in Chief, Karla Soares-Weiser, said this is a huge stride forward in providing a place for rapid evidence synthesis: “Cochrane has launched a critically important study-based register that clearly states the eligibility criteria and sources we are currently running through our centralized search and initial curation processes. The primary use case for this register is to support evidence synthesis efforts such as living systematic reviews, living network meta-analyses, and rapid reviews, all fed by living guidance related to COVID-19.”

She added: “The curation of this Study Register has been an important effort achieved in the past few weeks, led by Cochrane’s central executive team working rapidly with our development partners, Data Language and Metaxis.”

Cochrane’s Head of Information Technology, Chief Information Officer and project lead, Chris Mavergames, said: “Cochrane has been working for several years on technological solutions and processes to improve efficiency in evidence synthesis and move toward a ‘living evidence ecosystem’ model. COVID-19 presents a formidable challenge, and we will use our data curation and synthesis tools to assist in rapidly addressing the most important questions for global decision-makers. This Study Register represents a key pillar in that effort.”

Isabelle Boutron, Centre d'épidémiologie clinique, Centre de Recherche Épidémiologie et Statistiques, Cochrane France, leads a key project to synthesize COVID-19 evidence. She commented: “Cochrane’s COVID-19 Study Register helps us synthesize primary studies faster for our Living Network Meta-analysis and provide the relevant evidence to support researchers who are actively working to accelerate the development of diagnostics, preventive interventions, therapeutics and vaccines.”

Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Help prioritize topics for Cochrane COVID-19 Rapid Reviews

sri, 04/01/2020 - 20:08

Help prioritize topics for Cochrane Rapid Reviews on the current COVID-19 pandemic. Although we welcome  all responses, at this stage Cochrane will be prioritizing review titles which are the most important to healthcare workers, particularly those working in low- and middle-income countries.

Cochrane is engaging with a range of stakeholders inside and outside of Cochrane to build a bank of important questions emerging from the COVID-19 pandemic. Questions have been submitted by Cochrane Groups and users as well as external stakeholders including the World Health Organization (WHO), the UK National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) and the Brazilian Ministry of Health.

The first questions underwent a very early prioritization process to allow work to begin immediately on urgent reviews. The remaining questions are undergoing a quick refinement process to check they are in a format which can be answered by rapid reviews, and that they have not already been published elsewhere by other organisations.

To ensure that the most important questions are selected to progress as COVID Rapid Reviews, please fill out this survey by  Friday 3rd April. This survey will help prioritise the first eight potential Rapid Review questions.

If you would like to be notified of future rounds of priority setting, please contact support@cochrane.org who will add your name to the distribution list.

 

Wednesday, April 1, 2020

The COVID-19 Core Outcome Set Project – invitation to complete a survey by 10 April 2020

sri, 04/01/2020 - 14:39
Are you personally affected, concerned with, or at risk of getting COVID-19, or are you involved in the care of those who are? Complete this 10-minute survey to tell us which impacts of having COVID-19 you think are important to capture in the research being done on COVID-19. Your answers will help focus the research that is happening, which means the information that comes out of the research will be more helpful and informative to you. 

Details on the survey

The survey will ask you to give your opinion on the importance of 25 outcomes (which are physical, emotional or social effects) for people with suspected or confirmed COVID-19. The survey is anonymous, and anyone can participate. Please complete the survey by 10 April 2020.  All participants who complete the survey will receive a copy of the results. Once you have completed the survey please feel free to forward this email to others who may be interested.

CLICK HERE TO BEGIN: COVID-19-COS SURVEY

Background on the project

The global scientific community is coming together in the fight against COVID-19 (coronavirus), with 674 COVID-19 trials registered between the beginning of January and 23 March 2020 on the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) International Clinical Trials Registry Platform (ICTRP).

Evidence syntheses (where researchers look at all the studies available on one topic to assess what the evidence says overall) of these COVID-19 studies are also underway. Working with the WHO and other international stakeholders, Cochrane is building a bank of review questions, which are constantly being prioritized and refined. Frequent screening searches aim to keep the list up-to-date and reduce duplication of effort, as rapid reviews are conducted within Cochrane and across the wider community to inform health decisions during this pandemic.

To facilitate this evidence synthesis and to ensure the COVID-19 trials address the impacts of disease and treatment that are meaningful and of high priority to people affected or at risk of COVID-19, and those involved in their care, we need feedback on those affected by COVID-19 on the most important outcomes for COVID-19 research.

The COVID-19-COS project is part of the Australian Living Evidence Consortium National COVID-19 Clinical Evidence Taskforce guidelines initiative. This project aims to establish a core outcome set (which is an agreed, standardised group of outcomes to be reported by all trials within a research field) for trials in patients with confirmed or suspected COVID-19. This project is supported by Cochrane, with members of the Cochrane community involved in the COVID-19-COS Steering Committee.

Please see below for a message from the Steering Committee of this project for more details:

In response to the COVID-19 global pandemic, much research is underway to inform the care of people with suspected or confirmed COVID-19. We urgently need to know what outcomes are important to people with suspected or confirmed COVID-19, their family members, community members and health professionals. Your input will help us to rapidly develop a “core outcome set” in COVID-19. This is a list of outcomes (which are the impacts of COVID-19 or its treatment on patients) that should be reported, as a minimum, in all clinical trials in COVID-19. This will ensure that research and clinical guidelines address outcomes that are meaningful and important. This study will involve completion of two short survey rounds (10 minutes) in order to try and reach agreement among the group. You will be asked to give your opinion on the importance of 25 outcomes for people with suspected or confirmed COVID-19. The survey is anonymous, and anyone can participate. Round 1 is planned to close 10 April 2020 and all participants who complete the survey will receive a copy of the results.

CLICK HERE TO BEGIN: COVID-19-COS SURVEY

Thank you so much for your participation. Once you have completed the survey please feel free to forward this email to others who you may be interested.

COVID-19-COS Steering Committee  Jonathan Craig, Julian Elliott, Pedro Póvoa, John Marshall, Steve Webb, Sally Crowe, Paula Williamson, Lilia Cervantes, Tom Snelling, Yasser Sakr, Andrew Conway Morris, Ivor Douglas, Antoni Torres, Saad Nseir, Peter Horby, Luciano Azevedo, Sangeeta Mehta, Jaehee Lee, Derek Chew, Andrew Bersten, Alan Smyth, Anne McKenzie, Ella Flemyng, Tari Turner, Armando Teixeira-Pinto, Martin Howell, Allison Tong

Wwww.covid-19-cos.org
E: cos@covid-19-cos.org
T: @COVID19COS 

Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Special Collection: Effective options for quitting smoking during COVID-19

sri, 04/01/2020 - 11:46

Tobacco smoking has been identified as a major risk factor for developing Coronavirus (COVID-19) and complications that may arise as a result. In addition, second-hand smoke increases the risk of acute respiratory infections. Therefore, official advice is for people to stop smoking tobacco to minimize the risks associated with the current Coronavirus pandemic. This information may feel alarming and anxiety inducing for people who currently smoke. However, there are evidence-based ways to increase the chances of successfully quitting. 

Cochrane has created a Special Collection of existing Cochrane Systematic Reviews that summarize evidence for people wishing to give up smoking and for those helping them to give up. The Cochrane Reviews focus on interventions that are feasible under public health measures that restrict face to face contact with health practitioners. Given the risks of smoking during this pandemic, it is important to provide information that will help people to maximize their chances of success. 

The Cochrane Special Collection Effective options for quitting smoking during the COVID-19 pandemic includes Cochrane Reviews on nicotine replacement, behavioural support such as telephone, internet and text messaging programmes, and gradual quitting. This is one of several Special Collections relevant to COVID-19, other recently published collections include evidence relevant to critical care and infection control and prevention measures.  

Cochrane author, Jamie Hartmann-Boyce, from Nuffield Department of Primary Care Health Sciences, University of Oxford in the UK said, “There is a wealth of evidence on the best ways to stop smoking. The evidence suggests people who smoke should use a combination of stop smoking medicines and behavioural support to give them the best chances of success. Options may be limited at this time, but there are ways to boost chances of quitting smoking that don't involve face-to-face contact or prescriptions. This Special Collection pulls together the evidence Cochrane has on this topic, to help health professionals advise people and for quitters to use to inform their own decisions.”

Cochrane author, Nicola Lindson, also from the Nuffield Department of Primary Care Health Sciences, University of Oxford, UK, said "Anxiety and depression improve as a result of quitting smoking, so there is good reason to hang on in there when the going gets tough in trying to give up. If one method doesn't work, don't be discouraged - evidence shows some people need to try to quit many times before successfully doing so. Just because you haven't been able to quit smoking before, doesn't mean you won't be able to now.”

Cochrane Editor in Chief, Karla Soares-Weiser, added, “Cochrane is helping to build up the evidence base for those healthcare workers and policymakers working on the COVID-19 global response. We have a series of Special Collections being produced and shared with global decision makers. Smoking during the pandemic is associated with risks of contracting Coronavirus and complications arising from it. This Collection is particularly helpful for people looking to give up smoking and those helping others to give up.” 

Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Cochrane International Mobility - Ana Beatriz Pizarro

sri, 04/01/2020 - 11:42

Cochrane is made up of 11,000 members and over 67,000 supporters come from more than 130 countries, worldwide. Our volunteers and contributors are researchers, health professionals, patients, carers, people passionate about improving health outcomes for everyone, everywhere.

Getting involved in Cochrane’s work means becoming part of a global community. The Cochrane International Mobility programme connects successful applicants with a placement in a host Cochrane Group, learning more about the production, use, and knowledge translation of Cochrane reviews. The prgramme offers opportunities for learning and training not only for participants but also for host staff.

In this series, we profile those that have participated in the Cochrane International Mobility Program and learn more about their experiences.

Name: Ana Beatriz Pizarro
Location: Ana Beatriz Pizarro
Cochrane International Mobility location: Cochrane Sweden

How did you first learn about Cochrane?
I have been involved with Cochrane since 2016 because the first Cochrane Center in my country was at my university, and I was part of a research group with the director of Cochrane Colombia, that is where I learned everything about systematic reviews, research methodology and the Cochrane collaboration. Now, as a last-year nursing student, I'm the coordinator of the Colombian Cochrane Consumer Network, and I am also part of the coordinating committee of the Spanish version of the S4BE platform.

What was your experience with Cochrane International Mobility?
I work online from my home or eventually from the hospital. Sharing an international academic environment is the best way to broaden other ways of thinking, learning and doing stuff. I think it's great because it offers schedule flexibility, in every meeting I learn something new, the professors are always there for want I need and we also laugh a lot. We contacted in Cochrane's task marketplace; Task Exchange.

What are you doing now in relation to your Cochrane International Mobility experience?
I am currently in a kind of CIM with Matteo Buschettini and the team that also involves a professor from Texas, USA. We have been working on a systematic review of animal studies since January we are answering this research question: Does caffeine administration to neonatal pups affect neurodevelopment? I'm really excited because there's no convincing information about this and my goal is to keep working with EBM to help decision-makers choose the best available options of treatments or therapies for patients and their families to improve their quality of life. We meet weekly on zoom so we can check the updates of our team.

Do you have any words of advice to anyone conserving a Cochrane International Mobility experience?
Do not hesitate to do it. You will not regret it.

 

 

Monday, April 6, 2020

Stranice