Dear Colleague,

The trajectory of the COVID-19 pandemic is leveling off in some areas. This is welcome news, but we must not relax the public health restrictions that are vital to reducing viral transmission and saving lives. We are particularly concerned about those living in Africa, South Asia and Latin America where cases are climbing in countries with very limited capabilities to care for the critically ill. This threat is exacerbated by high income nations outbidding low income countries for life saving medical supplies. We need to focus on massively expanding the production of this material, not elbowing each other out for what is available.

This as also an opportunity to strengthen health care systems, invest in public health and strengthen the international community’s response to preventing, detecting and responding to potential pandemics. We must invest in the WHO and PAHO, strengthen their internal structures, empower their director generals’ offices and enable their organizations to have the control over processes and budgets they need to improve health outcomes, particularly for those who are least advantaged. This is not the time to weaken these organizations.

As always, our deepest sympathies go to those who have lost loved ones in this pandemic. We mourn our colleagues who have lost their lives fighting the virus on the front lines of healthcare systems around the world.

This newsletter is an accumulation of valuable sources of information that we hope will be helpful to you and your institution as we collectively battle this virus. Please register for our upcoming webinar on Apr. 16, 8:30pm EDT showcasing what Hong Kong, South Korea and Taiwan did to successfully reduce the spread of the virus; see our webinar outlining the plight of NY State and our Apr. 11 Letter in the Globe and Mail calling for a strengthening of support for LMICs and greater Canada-US collaboration in the response to the pandemic.

Thank you in advance for sharing this newsletter widely.

Best wishes,
Keith Martin MD
Executive Director
CUGH
Each volume of our COVID-19 newsletter contains new resources. To view previously included resources, see our archive of past newsletters here : https://www.cugh.org/announcements/covid-19-newsletter

This newsletter is divided into the following sections:
  • Advocacy efforts
  • Resources for educators
  • Resources for researchers
  • Resources for clinical work
  • Member requests
  • Other resources
ADVOCACY EFFORTS

Join us this Thursday, April 16th at 8:30 PM ET , for a CUGH webinar, 'Tackling the COVID-19 Pandemic: Experiences from Asia.' This webinar features three leading global health experts from the region who will share what worked in their battle against the virus. They will also describe what we need to do to strengthen our collective ability to prevent, detect and respond to disease outbreaks. Learn more and register here .
We need to strengthen the US' response to COVID-19, and we are mobilizing the CUGH network to do just that. If you are in the US, please call and write to your local Congresspersons' offices and ask that they use their powers to call on the White House to: 

  • Fully utilize the Defense Production Act to enable health care facilities and public health workers to access urgently needed PPE, ventilators and other medical supplies.
  • Use FEMA to coordinate and deliver these supplies with the assistance of the US military based on states' requests.
  • Fully mobilize the US military and National Guard to support the human resources needs of medical institutions.

Your US elected officials’ contact information is below.

  • US Representatives' contact information is here.
  • US Senators' contact information is here.

Please complete  this short-post engagement form .

Thank you so much for helping us to: strengthen the US’ response to the pandemic; and protect workers on the frontline! 

CUG H Executive Director, Dr. Keith Martin’s April 11 letter in the Globe and Mail calls for greater cooperation between the U.S. and Canadian governments to increase the production of medical supplies and assist LMIC nations in strengthening their capacity to respond to the pandemic. 

Join Lancet Migration's Global Call to Action for urgent inclusion of migrants & refugees in the COVID-19 response.

Watch the virtual forum with Georgetown University's Prof. Lawrence Gostin and Dr. Ashish Jha of the Harvard Global Health Institute as they discuss questions such as: What are the lessons the U.S. can heed from other countries fighting the COVID-19 pandemic? What measures do public health experts say the U.S. needs to take right now?

The FAO has revamped its online platform containing information on  food security policies . The Food and Agriculture Policy Decision Analysis Tool features a new section that makes it easier for states to see what decisions their peers are making in the COVID-19 pandemic. FAO hopes the platform will help governments consider all. their options when making choices that affect the global supply chain.    

Please join the Wilson Center and global health experts on April 16th, 2020, 10 am (ET) for a discussion on gender, the findings and recommendations found in the SoWN Report, and the unique role nurses play during the COVID-19 pandemic. Register for the webinar here .

Got 60 seconds? Share what you’re doing, seeing, or experiencing — and what people should know about the public health response to COVID-19. Your story can inspire and educate others and build support for public health professionals like you.

Many members of the science community are being called on for their expertise by the media. Dr. Borzekowski has created a guide to help you prepare for your next interview.

This letter to the editor by Drs. Lungiswa Nkonki and Sharon Fonn describe the actions ta ken by South Africa, that could ease the integration of the public and private sector, and move the country towards Universal Healthcare.
RESOURCES FOR EDUCATORS

One of the greatest difficulties facing everyone nowadays is a lack of clarity about what is going on and what lies ahead. Students especially feel a need to deepen their knowledge of the situation, as they often are viewed as resources by their friends and family. A team at Harvard Medical School set out to quickly collate and synthesize accurate information about the pandemic to share with classmates still eager to learn while sidelined from their regular classes and clinical activities, professors seeking to quickly change their course syllabi, and practicing health providers who were too occupied with clinical care to perform the research themselves.

This curriculum was entirely written and compiled by Harvard Medical School students. This document is not an official publication of the institution. It is provided for educational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice.

As the coronavirus pandemic has closed campuses, forcing higher education to reinvent itself in a matter of weeks, some colleges are also meeting this unprecedented moment with a renewed sense of purpose about their role in the community. They are contributing and producing medical equipment, offering buildings for use as overflow hospitals, and developing food-supply trackers.

To learn more about these projects, The Chronicle of Higher Education would like to hear from you. Use the form to share how your campus is joining the “war effort” to contain and fight the coronavirus — and mitigate its social and financial effects on the community.
T he American College Health Association (ACHA) has gathered various COVID-19 resources for college campuses, including FAQs for College Health Professionals .  

Over the next several weeks, the Board on Higher Education of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine will host a series of conversations to bring together academic, industry, government, and civic leaders across the country to understand the varied facets of what has happened so far, what is currently happening, and what is expected to happen in the weeks and months ahead. Each conversation will focus on a specific topic related to how the 4,000+ colleges and universities—and the researchers who work there—are supporting the response efforts. Webinars include:

  • How can researchers help the national response efforts? | Thursday, April 9, 2020 at 3-4:30 p.m. ET
  • How can and are laboratories shifting research agendas? | Wednesday, April 15, 2020 at 3-4:30 p.m. ET
  • How can we crowd-source scientists to improve public information | Thursday, April 16, 2020 at 3-4:30 p.m. ET
  • How can we provide policy advice to the nation faster? | Friday, April 17, 2020 at 3-4:30 p.m. ET

This article is part of a series on the financial challenges facing colleges and universities amid the coronavirus pandemic and the need for proactive strategies. (Paywall)
RESOURCES FOR RESEARCHERS

The CDC is modifying existing surveillance systems to track COVID-19, and posted the first of what will be a weekly surveillance report called, “COVIDView.” The report, updated each Friday, will summarize and interpret key indicators, including information related to COVID-19  outpatient visits emergency department visits, hospitalizations, and  deaths , as well as  laboratory data .

Africa CDC has a COVID-19 resource page, which includes a dashboard (number of cases, deaths, and recoveries), infographics and posters, outbreak briefs, as well as scientific and health policy updates.

The rapid spread of COVID-19 virus across the globe is affecting millions of people and is at the same time resulting in the spread of information, misinformation (false information spread without malicious intent) and disinformation (false information spread with the intent to deceive). SANCHAR's intention is not to create additional information but to bring together credible COVID-19 related information that is easy to access, understand and act upon. SANCHAR tries to address how to navigate the large amounts of information and will update this page as more evidence becomes available.

April 29, 2020, 1:00 PM (ET)

How do pandemics disproportionately impact vulnerable communities, and how do environmental stressors exacerbate these disparities? Does climate change play a role in shaping pandemics? What lessons might we learn from the response to COVID-19 that can be applied to the climate crisis? What federal laws may be invoked to address the pandemic and protect vulnerable communities? Hear from leading experts as they explore these questions and more.

While the immediate impacts of COVID-19 are already apparent, some have yet to surface, and many of them will have different effects for different genders. Health systems, schools, and entire economies will continue to present gender-differential consequences for months and years to come as a result of this ongoing crisis.

By applying a gender lens to this pandemic, researchers and policy makers can better assess differential risks and target responses to ensure already-vulnerable populations don’t fall even farther behind. Join this online discussion with CGD experts, external researchers, practitioners, and advocates on how a gender lens helps us better understand and respond to the threat of COVID-19.
RESOURCES FOR CLINICAL WORK

Physician Support Line is a free and confidential support line service made up of 400+ volunteer psychiatrists, joined together in the determined hope to provide peer support for our physician colleagues as we all navigate the COVID-19 epidemic. Free. Confidential. No appointment necessary. Call 1-888-409-0141.

Even before the COVID-19 crisis, many clinicians already faced burnout, as well as stress, anxiety, depression, substance abuse, and even suicidality. Now this global public health emergency is presenting clinicians with even greater workplace hardships and moral dilemmas that are very likely to exacerbate existing levels of burnout and related mental health problems.

During this challenging time, we should all aspire to follow clear strategies, both as health care leaders and as individual clinicians, to help sustain the well-being of clinicians amidst the COVID-19 outbreak.

To find additional COVID-19 resources from the National Academy of Medicine, see here .

As the COVID-19 pandemic evolves, the American Academy of Pediatrics has been staying abreast of all confirmed developments related to its global spread and will continue to be vigilant in efforts to develop and share information and guidance with members.

National Rural Health Association (NRHA) takes seriously the impact that pandemics and public health emergencies have on its members and rural communities nationwide. They will continue to advocate  f or rural communities to have the resources they need to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The COVID-19 outbreak and its impact on our daily lives is rapidly evolving. Here are some resources and guidance to help dentists navigate this unprecedented time for their practices, staff and patients.

The course is designed for busy clinicians to learn in short learning segments and offers a framework to understand the nature of the SARS-CoV-2 infection. As the understanding of COVID-19 is rapidly changing, modules will be updated periodically as new information becomes available. 

PANDEMIC Course Topics include:
  • Epidemiology
  • Clinical Course
  • Severe Disease
  • Therapeutics, and
  • Personal Protection for Health Care Workers

The PEC recognizes that health care providers are busy caring for patients, leaving little time to search medical literature for relevant journal articles. The digital format is presented as easily digestible curated journal articles, with summaries and educational quizzes. Providers who want or need to learn more about COVID-19 can conveniently access the course on personal mobile devices during a short break or as you have time to sit down and work through a module. 

This package includes links to resources reviewed by Operation Smile Global Headquarters staff, divided into the main areas of community support, health worker training and health system considerations. As part of this resource, included in the health system section, a COVID-19 Surge Staffing Checklist created by Operation Smile has been added. This checklist clearly and concisely addresses everything that hospitals and health systems need to plan and deploy a large number of health workers to provide care during the COVID-19 pandemic. Many of the vetted list of resources geared to meet the most pressing needs of hospitals responding to COVID outbreaks can also be found in Spanish. More languages will be added in the following weeks.
MEMBER REQUESTS

In times of global uncertainty, the Lee Kum Sheung Center for Health and Happiness at Harvard is committed to building a repository of resources focused on resilience, drawing from the latest science and informed by partnerships across Harvard and beyond.

Participate in a one minute anonymous survey conducted by American University of Beirut's Global Health Institute aiming to know your main concerns during the COVID-19 crisis!

April 21st, 2020, 3:00 PM (ET)

Join Drexel University College of Nursing and Health Profession’s AgeWell Collaboratory webinar to discuss how COVID-19 has disrupted our approach to caregiving; the strides we have made to combat ageism; daily life for older people aging at home and in facilities across the country; and the work of professionals in the aging network.

COVID-19 has reached many sub-Saharan African countries that are already suffering from malnutrition and disease, under-resourced health systems, and limited economic funding. Richard Marlink, director of Rutgers Global Health Institute and a leader in the global response to HIV/AIDS, discusses how this pandemic is likely to impact the African region and what can be done to help these countries.

Rutgers University is also curating a webpage of news stories in which Rutgers faculty and researchers are highlighted. You can find this here .  

The BRAC James P Grant School of Public Health, BRAC University is taking an active role in carrying out urgent research focusing on the most vulnerable groups in Bangladesh along with aggregating and sharing useful resources from local and global sources to better combat the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The School’s efforts are being undertaken in collaboration with colleagues, networks, practitioners, research and academic partners, health care organizations, civil society and policymakers nationally and globally. It is hoped that through this collaboration the lives and struggles particularly of the poorest communities are better understood so as to inform immediate interventions and policies being implemented to address this unprecedented modern-day pandemic.

To this end, they would like to invite readers to contribute and share important public health guidelines/articles/advocacy efforts related to the pandemic for posting on our website. The School also welcomes research partnerships and collaborations on COVID-19. Contact amreen.qaiyum@bracjpgsph.org for more information.
OTHER RESOURCES

As the world faces unprecedented fear and uncertainty, the mental health community understands that we are stronger together. That’s why Psych Hub teamed up with the nation’s most credible mental health organizations to collaborate on a free resource hub to help people address their mental health needs during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The One Health Social Sciences network is hosting various webinars related to COVID-19. Register now!

April 16, 2020
7:00 PM - 8:00 PM (EDT)

April 30, 2020
11:00 am – 12:30 pm (EDT)

This webinar joins two experts in zoonotic epidemics in an inter-disciplinary dialogue about the social, cultural, and political stakes of eliminating the wildlife trade and, in particular, the role of “wet markets”.

As the breeding ground for the current worldwide COVID-19 pandemic, epidemiologists, public health officials, and wildlife conservationists have called for shutting down these markets. However, as a central means of sustenance for many communities around the world, the full impacts of closing the markets and necessary strategies to address them will be addressed.
As many individuals are working from home, Zoom has created a support page to provide guidance on Zoom basics, educating over Zoom, virtual events and Telehealth.

Since the outbreak of COVID-19, some East and Southeast Asian countries have employed various public health policy and medical approaches to slow the spread of the virus within their borders. These measures have been reasonably effective in slowing the spread of the pandemic, but they have not taken root in many countries outside of the region.

This webinar, hosted by the Brookings Institute, featured experts from Asia to discuss and evaluate methods that have worked to combat the COVID-19 pandemic. Panelists reviewed the national responses of China, Japan, Singapore, and South Korea and assessed future prevention, treatments and trajectory of COVID-19.

The webinar series will draw from and complement existing advisory activities underway at APHA and the National Academies, including the  Standing Committee on Emerging Infectious Diseases and 21st Century Health Threats , which was convened for the purpose of advising the White House and federal agencies on the U.S. response to COVID-19.

The series will rapidly and regularly provide trustworthy scientific analysis of the latest COVID-19 developments for the benefit of policymakers, public health and health care officials, and the general public. The series will explore the scientific basis for guidance issued by government, health and public health organizations, and industry, as well as answer questions that are top of mind for its audiences.
Consortium of Universities for Global Health
202-974-6363 | info@CUGH.org | www.CUGH.org