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Ongoing initiatives on COVID-19

CanCOVID Network

The Chief Science Advisor’s role is to provide advice on the latest scientific developments in COVID-19 research or for COVID-19 response to the Prime Minister and the Cabinet.

The primary federal authoritative source of information for all Canadians on COVID-19 is Canada.ca/coronavirus, as well as the COVID-19 Information Line at 1-833-784-4397. Canadians should refer to these resources for regularly updated information and guidance.

National and international initiatives:

CanCOVID Network

Canada’s Chief Science Advisor has collaborated with the Government of Canada’s departmental science advisors, the U15 Group of Canadian Research Universities, Compute Ontario and the University of Toronto to launch CanCOVID, a new Canada-wide network of health, science and policy researchers to facilitate COVID-19 research collaboration. [Read more]

Call for Open Access to COVID-19 Publications

Government science advisors from around the world, including Canada, called on scientific publishers to make all research related to the coronavirus and Covid-19 more freely available. [Read more]

Expert panels and task forces:

Reports
  • The Role of Bioaerosols and Indoor Ventilation in COVID-19 Transmission (September 2020) [Read more]
  • Long-Term Care and COVID-19: Report of a special task force prepared for the Chief Science Advisor of Canada (Summer 2020) [Read more]
  • COVID-19 and Children: Report of a special task force led by the Chief Science Advisor of Canada (July 2020) [Read more]
COVID-19 Expert Panel

The Chief Science Advisor of Canada (CSA) has assembled a multidisciplinary science expert panel to advise her on the latest scientific developments relevant to COVID-19. This information assists the CSA in providing current, cross-disciplinary and independent advice to the Prime Minister and government. [Read more]

Expert Group on Health Systems

At the request of Health Canada, Canada’s Chief Science Advisor (CSA) has assembled a multidisciplinary panel of experts on health systems and hospitals to obtain practical opinion from domain experts in order to inform her advice to the federal government regarding health services needs and innovation. This group is a sub-committee of the COVID-19 Expert Panel, and is co-chaired by the Deputy Minister of Health and the CSA. [Read more]

Expert Group on Modelling Approaches

Objective: review modelling approaches to predict and manage disease spread, and identify hot spots in provinces and territories, as well as recovery strategies, data accessibility and data gaps. [Read more]

Task Force on Reprocessing of Respirators/ N95 Masks

Objective: examine available evidence on reprocessing and re-use of N95 face masks (also referred to as respirators) and provide recommendations regarding the use of reprocessed masks in light of potential shortages of these devices.

Membership list:

  • Dan Krewski PhD, University of Ottawa (Chair)
  • Deborah Cook MD, McMaster
  • Joanne Langley MD, Dalhousie University
  • Caroline Quach MD, Université de Montréal
  • Supriya Sharma MD, Health Canada
  • James Strong PhD, Public Health Agency of Canada
Task Force on Ventilators

Objective: advise on how to ensure that federally acquired ventilators go to the right places at the right time.

Membership list:

  • Tom Noseworthy MD, University of Calgary (chair)
  • Deborah Cook MD, McMaster University
  • Frédéric D’Aragon MD, Université de Sherbrooke
  • Irfan Dhalla MD, University of Toronto
  • William Ghali PhD, University of Calgary
  • Joanne Langley MD, Dalhousie University
  • Joanne Liu MD, Université de Montréal
  • Boyan Paunovic MD, University of Manitoba
  • Thomas Stelfox MD, University of Calgary
  • Abby Hoffman, Health Canada (observer)
  • Gavin Brown, Health Canada (observer)
  • Alexandre Bourque-Viens, Office of the Chief Science Advisor (support)
Task Force on Virtual Care

Objective: examine opportunities for the rapid and orderly deployment of virtual care in support of COVID-19 containment efforts.

Membership list:

  • Louis-Martin Rousseau PhD, Polytechnique Montréal
  • Robyn Tamblyn PhD, McGill University
  • Abby Hoffman, Health Canada (observer)
  • Alexandre Bourque-Viens, Office of the Chief Science Advisor (support)
Task Force on Long-Term Care

Objective: provide recommendations on how to address the unique challenges of combating COVID-19 in Long-Term Care homes.

Membership list:

  • Alan Forster MD, University of Ottawa (chair)
  • Irfan Dhalla MD, University of Toronto
  • William Ghali MD, University of Calgary
  • Rejean Hebert MD, Université de Montréal
  • Jerome Leis MD, University of Toronto
  • Joanne Liu MD, Université de Montréal
  • Andrea Moser MD, University of Toronto
  • Paula Rochon MD, Women’s College Hospital, University of Toronto
  • Cara Tannenbaum MD, Université de Montréal and Health Canada Departmental Science Advisor
  • Roger Wong MD, University of British Columbia
  • Abby Hoffman, Health Canada (observer)
  • Vivian Tam, University of Toronto (support)
  • Alexandre Bourque-Viens, Office of the Chief Science Advisor (support)
Task Force on Data Analytics

Objective: examine data sharing frameworks, i.e. what data should be captured, how it can be gathered, how it can be accessed.

Membership list:

  • David Buckeridge MD PhD, McGill University
  • Alan Forster MD, University of Ottawa
  • Irfan Dhalla MD, University of Toronto
  • William Ghali MD, University of Calgary
  • Alexandre Bourque-Viens, Office of the Chief Science Advisor (support)
Task Force on COVID-19 in Children

Objective: to assess evidence and knowledge gaps related to COVID-19 in children including with respect to infectivity, transmission, disease course and risk factors.

Membership list:

  • Susanne Benseler MD, PhD, Alberta Children's Hospital, University of Calgary
  • Christine Chambers PhD, Dalhousie University
  • Dominique Cousineau MD, CHU Sainte-Justine, Université de Montréal
  • Eyal Grunebaum MD, Hospital for Sick Children, University of Toronto
  • Judith Hall MD, BC Children's Hospital, University of British Columbia
  • Paul Kubes PhD, Cumming School of Medicine, University of Calgary
  • Joanne Langley MD, Dalhousie University
  • Ronald Laxer MD, Hospital for Sick Children, University of Toronto
  • Amy Plint MD, Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario, University of Ottawa
  • Constantin Polychronakos MD, Montreal Children's Hospital, McGill University
  • Caroline Quach MD, CHU Sainte-Justine, Université de Montréal
  • Supriya Sharma MD, Health Canada
Task Force on Optimal Use of Health System Capacity

Objective: provide practical advice regarding the optimal use of health system’s capacity towards COVID and non-COVID patients.

Membership list:

  • Louis-Martin Rousseau PhD, Polytechnique Montréal (chair)
  • David Buckeridge MD PhD, McGill University
  • Mike Carter PhD, University of Toronto
  • Marie-Andrée Fortin MD, Centre intégré de cancérologie de Laval (CICL)
  • Alan Forster MD, Ottawa Hospital Research Institute, University of Ottawa
  • William Ghali MD, University of Calgary
  • Joanne Langley MD, Dalhousie University
  • Jonathan Patrick PhD, University of Ottawa
  • Scott Tyldesley MD, University of British Columbia
  • Peter Vanberkel PhD, Dalhousie University
  • Gavin Brown, Health Canada (observer)
  • Abby Hoffman, Health Canada (observer)
  • Marcel Saulnier, Health Canada (observer)
  • Alexandre Bourque-Viens, Office of the Chief Science Advisor (support)
Task Force on Long-Term Care Systemic Issues

Objective: identify long-term care systemic issues revealed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Membership list:

  • Alan Forster MD, University of Ottawa (chair)
  • Irfan Dhalla MD, University of Toronto
  • Carole Estabrooks PhD, University of Alberta
  • William Ghali MD, University of Calgary
  • Rejean Hebert MD, Université de Montréal
  • Janice Keefe PhD, Mount Saint Vincent University
  • Jerome Leis MD, University of Toronto
  • Joanne Liu MD, Université de Montréal
  • Andrea Moser MD, University of Toronto
  • Tom Noseworthy MD, University of Calgary
  • Paula Rochon MD, Women’s College Hospital, University of Toronto
  • Roger Wong MD, University of British Columbia
  • Abby Hoffman, Health Canada (observer)
  • Alexandre Bourque-Viens, Office of the Chief Science Advisor (support)

Government of Canada’s investments in research to fight against COVID-19:

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