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Ask a Librarian: COVID-19 (updated regularly)

Testing for COVID-19

Last updated: September 27, 2021 - Originally published: February 10, 2020

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CMA Joule’s Ask a Librarian team has committed its skills to curate free evidence-based resources related to the current COVID-19 pandemic. We periodically update the Ask a Librarian - COVID-19 vaccines and the immunization roll-out with current clinical summaries, article collections, guidance and more. This page will be updated regularly – the information and resources added most recently will be marked with an asterisk (*).

Visit the CMA’s COVID-19 page for public health information and resources for physicians and patients. 

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Clinical summaries

DynaMed

Access DynaMed online or through the mobile app to get concise overviews and detailed recommendations, medical graphics and images, drug information from Micromedex and more.

COVID-19 (Novel Coronavirus) – Updated September 23, 2021

Description

  • global pandemic of acute respiratory disease caused by a novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) 1
  • SARS-CoV-2 is a member of beta genus coronaviruses closely related to SARS-CoV (Nat Microbiol 2020 Mar 2 early online)
  • common signs of COVID-19 include fever, cough, and shortness of breath1
  • there is no specific antiviral treatment for COVID-19, but supportive care may help to relieve symptoms and should include support of vital organ functions in severe cases1

Recent selected updates *

  • 23 Sep 2021: 227,940,972 confirmed cases of COVID-19 including 4,682,899 deaths worldwide reported by World Health Organization (WHO) as of September 19, 2021 (WHO Weekly Epidemiological Update 2021 Sep 21) View in topic
  • 23 Sep 2021: BNT162b2 vaccine may be 84% effective against COVID-19 at ≥ 4 months after second dose in adolescents and adults ≥ 12 years old (N Engl J Med 2021 Sep 15 early online) View in topic
  • 21 Sep 2021: CDC general community guidance for fully vaccinated persons (CDC 2021 Sep 1) View in topic
  • 21 Sep 2021: CDC interim guidance on discontinuation of transmission-based precautions and disposition of patients with COVID-19 in healthcare settings (CDC 2021 Sep 10) View in topic
  • 21 Sep 2021: CDC interim recommendations on infection prevention and control for healthcare personnel during the COVID-19 pandemic (CDC 2021 Sep 10) View in topic
  • 20 Sep 2021: vaccine effectiveness to prevent COVID-19 hospitalizations reported to remain stable (92%-96%) in New York, United States during period of increase in B.1.617.2 (delta) variant prevalence, but vaccine effectiveness to prevent SARS-CoV-2 infection reported to decrease from 92% to 79% (MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep 2021 Aug 27) View in topic
  • 20 Sep 2021: in adults ≤ 55 years old, 44- to 45-week interval between first and second dose of ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 vaccine (Oxford-AstraZeneca) associated with increased antibody level 28 days after second dose compared to shorter intervals, but antibody level may be reduced by about 70% at about 45 weeks after first dose (Lancet 2021 Sep 11) View in topic
  • 20 Sep 2021: 1-21 days after vaccination with mRNA vaccine may have similar overall rates of selected serious adverse events compared to 22-42 days after vaccination, but mRNA vaccination may be associated with 0.0006% increased risk of myocarditis or pericarditis per vaccine dose in persons aged 12-39 years (JAMA 2021 Sep 3 early online) View in topic
  • 20 Sep 2021: in adults ≤ 55 years old, third dose of ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 (Oxford-AstraZeneca) vaccine at about 7 months after second dose reported to be safe and may increase antibody and T cell responses (Lancet 2021 Sep 11) View in topic
  • 13 Sep 2021: SARS-CoV-2 notable emerging variants update (WHO 2021 Sep 2) View in topic
  • 13 Sep 2021: in patients with COVID-19 discharged from hospital, symptoms persisting at 6 months include fatigue or muscle weakness, reduced exercise capacity, problems sleeping, anxiety or depression, and impaired pulmonary diffusion; at 12 months, prevalence of physical and functional symptoms appears generally lower, but anxiety and depression may be more prevalent (Lancet 2021 Aug 28)  View in topic
  • 13 Sep 2021: National Institutes of Health (NIH) recommendations on casirivimab and imdevimab for postexposure prophylaxis (NIH 2021 Sep 3) View in topic
  • 13 Sep 2021: CDC interim public health recommendations for fully vaccinated people (CDC 2021 Sep 1) View in topic

Topic Summary (CMA members can access all full summaries via this link)

DynaMed COVID-19 related summaries

BMJ Best Practice

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) – This topic last updated: September 16, 2021.

 

UpToDate

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) – Literature review current through August 2021. This topic last updated: September 20, 2021.

 

Essential Evidence Plus

Coronavirus SARS-CoV2 infection (COVID-19) – This topic last updated: August 16, 2021.

 

Canadian Pharmacists Association

CPS Web (CMA members only) – Access the COVID-19 chapter for drug monographs and patient drug information for AstraZeneca, Janssen, Moderna, and PFIZER-BIONTECH COVID-19 vaccines. Last updated: July 2021. *

 

Clinical information via ClinicalKey

ClinicalKey drives better care by delivering fast, concise answers, and deep access to evidence whenever, wherever you need it. ClinicalKey includes access to 1,000+ textbooks, 600 full-text journals, images, videos and customizable patient handouts across 30+ medical specialties

Novel Coronavirus Information Center  (Elsevier/ClinicalKey) - freely available and current information in English and Mandarin Chinese. Updated: September 21, 2021.

In ClinicalKey (CMA members only), search “COVID-19” for the latest articles from The Lancet, International Journal of Infectious Diseases, Journal of Infection and more.

Procedural Videos - Orotracheal Intubation (login required).

Book chapters:

Novel Coronavirus from Wuhan China, 2019-20, Update to Chapter 155, Mandell, Douglas, and Bennett's Principles and Practice of Infectious Diseases, Ninth Edition (Elsevier, 2020). 

Coronaviruses, Including Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS), Chapter 155, Mandell, Douglas, and Bennett's Principles and Practice of Infectious Diseases, Ninth Edition (Elsevier, 2020).

 

Evidence syntheses

American Family Physician – Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Daily Research Briefs. Updated September 20, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021. 

Canadian Agency for Drugs and Technologies in Health – CADTH COVID-19 evidence portal. Updated September 14, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Centre for Evidence-Based Medicine Oxford University – Oxford COVID-19 evidence service. Updated September 10, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Dala Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto – REAL – COVID-19 Rapid Evidence Access Link – Updated March 22, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021.

EPPI Centre - COVID-19: a living systematic map of the evidence – Updated September 23, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Essential Evidence Plus. CMA Joule –  COVID-19 research briefs (Archive). *New in 2021* Selected COVID-19 research briefs are published as part of the regular POEMs schedule. Updated December 27, 2020. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Evidence aid ‒ Coronavirus (COVID-19) – summaries of relevant research. Updated September 27, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021.

McMaster University - COVID-19 Evidence Alerts – weekly update of high-quality clinical studies. Free email notification is available upon registration. Last updated September 27, 2021. September 27, 2021.

McMaster University – COVID-19 Evidence Network to support Decision-making (COVID-END) No date. Accessed September 27, 2021.

VA Evidence Synthesis Program – COVID-19 Evidence Reviews . Updated September 22, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021.

 

Articles, article collections and reviews

Annals of Internal Medicine – Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19).

BMJ - Coronavirus (COVID-19) hub – collection of freely available news articles, opinion and timeline.

Cambridge University Press – Coronavirus Free Access Collection. 

CMAJ – COVID-19 – CMAJ articles, podcasts and blogs on public health and policy.

cmajOPEN – COVID-19 – collection of COVID-19 research articles.

Elsevier Vaccines Toolkit – latest evidence-based information about vaccines approved for use to prevent COVID-19 infections. 

Epocrates COVID-19 Drug Therapy Trial Updates – links to trials and resources focused on therapeutics. 

JAMA Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) – collection of current articles and multimedia.

The Lancet COVID-19 Resource Centre – free access to COVID-19 content from across The Lancet journals.

Merck Manuals COVID-19 Information and Resources – news, commentary and FAQs.

New England Journal of Medicine – Coronavirus (COVID-19) – collection of articles and other resources on the 2019 Novel Coronavirus outbreak including clinical reports, management guidelines and commentary (Chinese translations available for some content).

Oxford University Press – free access to OUP resources on COVID-19, other coronaviruses and related topics. 

Springer-Nature – Coronavirus (COVID-19) Research Highlights. 

Wiley Online Library - Covid-19: Novel Coronavirus Outbreak. 

Wolters Kluwer COVID-19 Resources & Tools (Coronavirus Resources) – updates, articles and podcasts. 

 

Guidelines and other information

International 

Calculate by QxMD – Severe COVID-19 Prediction Tool. No date. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention –  Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19): information for health care workers. Last reviewed March 31, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021. 

Cytel (biostatistics) – Global Coronavirus COVID-19 Clinical Trial Tracker - world map of clinical trials. Last updated August 16, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021. 

European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control – Coronavirus disease. Updated September 24, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021. 

Johns Hopkins University – Interactive, global map tracking COVID-19. Updated September 27, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021.

National COVID-19 Clinical Evidence Taskforce (Australia) – Caring for people with COVID-19. Last updated August 26, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021. 

National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (UK) – Coronavirus (COVID-19) No date.  Accessed September 27, 2021.

University of Pennsylvania Center for Evidence-based Practice – COVID-19 Guidance Summaries. Updated June 4, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021.

World Health Organization – Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic. Updated September 27, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021.

National 

Canadian Institute for Health Information – COVID-19 resources.  Last updated August 26, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) – COVID19 Recommendations and Gateway to Contextualization. Updated September 20, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Boldly (by Canadian Medical Association) – Ask a Librarian: COVID-19 vaccines and the immunization roll-out. Updated July 26, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Canadian Medical Association – CMA update: COVID-19. No date. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Centre for Effective Practice – COVID-19 Resource Centre. Updated April 2021.  Accessed September 27, 2021.

Choosing Wisely Canada – COVID-19. No date. Accessed September 27, 2021.

CMA Joule – Clinical guideline search (CPG Infobase). Clinical Practice Guidelines on COVID-19/Coronavirus infections. Updated Septembe, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021.

College of Family Physicians of Canada – COVID-19 Information and Resources. Updated September 8, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Government of Canada – Coronavirus disease (COVID-19): For health professionals. Updated August 20, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Government of Canada – Coronavirus disease (COVID-19): Outbreak update. Updated September 16, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Government of Canada – Coronavirus infection: Symptoms and treatment. Updated September 24, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Infection Prevention and Control Canada – Coronavirus (COVID-19) SARS-CoV-2. Updated September 26, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Public Health Agency of Canada – Infection prevention and control for coronavirus disease (COVID-19): Second interim guidance for acute healthcare settings. Updated June 16, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Statistics Canada – COVID-19 A data perspective. Last updated September 27, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Provincial

British Columbia:

Yukon: Government of Yukon – COVID-19 information. Updated September 24, 2021.  Accessed September 27, 2021.

Northwest Territories: Government of Northwest Territories – Health and Social Services - COVID-19 in NWT. Updated April 6, 2021. Accessed April 7, 2021.

Alberta: Alberta Health Services – COVID-19 Information for Albertans). Updated September 27, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Saskatchewan: Saskatchewan – COVID-19. No date. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Manitoba: 

Nunavut: Nunavut Department of Health – COVID-19 (Novel Coronavirus). Updated September 27, 2021.  Accessed September 27, 2021.

Ontario:

Quebec:

New Brunswick:  Office of the Chief Medical Officer of Health (Public Health) New Brunswick – Coronavirus. No date. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Nova Scotia:

Prince Edward Island: Prince Edward Island Health and Wellness – COVID-19. Updated September 27, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021. 

Newfoundland: Newfoundland Health and Community Services – NLife with COVID-19. Updated September 24, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021. 

 

Webinars and podcasts 

American Medical Association ED Hub –  Coronavirus (COVID19). No date. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Association of Medical Microbiology and Infectious Disease (AMMI) Canada – TEACH. ENGAGE. APPLY (CUPA-TEA) COVID-10 webinar series. Updated December 3, 2020. Accessed September 27, 2021.

BMJ Best Practice – BMJ Best Practice Podcasts. No date. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy, University of Minnesota -  COVID-19 Podcasts and Webinars. Updated September 23, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021.

CMA Joule –  COVID-19 Learning Series. No date. Accessed September 27, 2021.

CMAJ Podcasts –  COVID-19 Podcasts. No date. Accessed September 27, 2021.

College of Family Physician of Canada – COVID-19 Webinars. Updated March 23, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Elsevier – Expert Insights on COVID-19 podcasts. No date. Accessed September 27, 2021. *

The JAMA Network – Coronavirus videos. Updated March 25, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021.

University of Toronto – What’s Next COVID-19 Podcast. Updated December 17, 2020. Accessed September 27, 2021.

University of Toronto Faculty of Medicine – COVID-19 Webinars. No date. Accessed September 27, 2021.

 

Telemedicine and virtual care 

CADTH – Enablers for virtual visits. Updated September 4, 2020. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Canada Health Infoway – Rapid response to COVID-19. Updated January 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Canadian Medical Association, The College of Family Physicians, and Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada – Virtual care guide for patients. June 2020. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Canadian Medical Association, The College of Family Physicians, and Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada – Virtual Care Playbook. March 30, 2020. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Canadian Medical Protective Association – Telehealth and virtual care. No date. Accessed September 27, 2021.

C.D. Howe Institute – Canada’s Virtual Care Revolution: A Framework for Success. August 19, 2020. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Centre for Addiction and Mental Health – Virtual care: Resources for health care workers during COVID-19. No date. Accessed September 27, 2021.

College of Family Physicians of Canada – Virtual Care in the Patient’s Medical Home. February 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021.

College of Physicians & Surgeons of Alberta – COVID-19: Virtual Care. Updated November 2020. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Doctors of BC – Virtual Care Toolkit. Updated February 23, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Ontario MD – Virtual care is here to stay. No date. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada –  Telemedicine and virtual care guidelines (and other clinical resources for COVID-19). Updated July 6, 2020. Accessed September 27, 2021.

 

Ethics and medical-legal resources

BC Centre for Disease Control – Ethics. Last updated September 22, 2021.  Accessed September 27, 2021.

Canadian Medical Association – Framework for Ethical Decision Making During the Coronavirus Pandemic. Updated April 1, 2020. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Canadian Medical Protective Association – COVID-19 Hub. Advice, support, and medical-legal protection during the COVID-19 pandemic. Updated September 20, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Hastings Center – Ethics Resources on the Coronavirus (COVID-19). collection of articles and reports on ethics related to COVID-19, other coronaviruses and pandemics. No date. Accessed September 27, 2021.

National Collaborating Centre for Healthy Public Policy/ Institut national de santé publique (Québec) – Public Health Ethics and COVID-19: Selected Resources. Last updated: March 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021.

 

Patient education resources

Canadian Medical Association, the College of Family Physicians of Canada and the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada – Questions and answers on COVID-19. No date. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Canadian Medical Association – COVID-19 Resources and Tools for the public.  No date. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention – Prevent the spread of COVID-19 if you are sick. August 11, 2020. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention – What you should know about COVID-19 to protect yourself and others. Updated March 17, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Public Health Agency of Canada – Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19): Awareness resources (fact sheets and infographics available in many languages). Updated May 28, 2021. Accessed September 27, 2021.

Ryerson University National Institute on Ageing (NIA) – My COVID-19 Visit Risk. Understand the risks associated with your planned visit, and tips on how to make any proposed visits as safe as possible. Accessed September 27, 2021.

 

Databases and pre-populated literature searches

COVID-19 SARS-CoV-2 preprints from medRxiv and bioRxiv  

COVID-19 global literature on coronavirus disease – World Health Organization

Cochrane Library – Coronavirus (COVID-19) – evidence relevant to critical care.

Coronavirus disease (COVID‑19) – Epistemonikos foundation L·OVE database.

COVID-19 primer – Powered by Primer (AI) – dashboard for latest research and trending news and articles. 

LitCovid – the US National Library of Medicine’s curated literature hub for tracking up-to-date scientific information about the virus.

GoogleScholar search

Pubmed search

Trip database search (Turning research into practice)

 

 

Need more information or have a more focused clinical question on coronaviruses or any other clinical topic of interest? Contact the Ask a Librarian team to request a literature search.

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This material is for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice and should not be relied on as health or personal advice. The opinions stated by the authors are made in a personal capacity and do not necessarily reflect those of the Canadian Medical Association and its subsidiaries including Joule.

 

About the author(s)

CMA Joule’s medical librarians are the professionals behind “Ask a Librarian”, a service for all CMA members looking for clinical search expertise. This experienced team of librarians can support you by searching on your behalf, teaching you effective search strategies or training you to use our clinical resources.