Update from the Cochrane COVID Rapid Reviews Team

Posted 13th April 2020

Just over three weeks ago, we took the decision to support the publication of rapid reviews relating to the COVID-19 pandemic and to maintain a bank of questions to help researchers respond to important questions without duplicating effort. The response from across Cochrane and the wider research community has been immense and we have been blown away by the spirit of collaboration. Cochrane's first COVID-19 Rapid Review has already been published and numerous others have teams in place rapidly working towards submission.

We now need to pause to organize the huge number of questions that have been submitted and respond to individuals and teams who have expressed an interest or offered support. We are further developing our templates and putting systems and processes in place to better coordinate with Cochrane Groups to ensure the highest priority questions are identified and refined, and reviews produced to a high standard as quickly as possible. We are also developing the website to make it easier to find questions by type and keyword and to illustrate which are being addressed within Cochrane or by external teams, and which are available for author teams to pursue. We have also clarified the process for teams wanting to submit a review for consideration when a question has not yet been prioritized and the criteria for Fast-Track editorial review is not met.

We expect the questions to change over time as existing challenges relating to the pandemic evolve and new ones emerge, and we want to be prepared to cope with the demand as the situation develops. We hope to be functioning at full capacity within one to two weeks and ask for your patience while we focus on priority reviews in the editorial process and put the necessary systems in place to rise to the ongoing challenge.

Kayleigh Kew (Senior Methods Editor), Rachel Marshall (Senior Editorial Officer), Ella Flemyng (Methods Implementation Coordinator), Froeks Kamminga (Methods Liaison Officer)