Information and resources related to COVID-19 are rapidly being developed as we learn more about the virus and its spread. To support people who use drugs, people in recovery, front-line service providers, and health care workers, we’ve compiled the best available guidance here and will update as new resources become available.
World Health Organization Coronavirus Resources, World Health Organization (Switzerland) Page from the global health organization containing guidance on how to avoid becoming ill, current situation reports, technical guidelines and research. Harvard Coronavirus Resource Centre, Harvard University (USA) Website aggregating news and publications on COVID-19, including podcasts, helpful links, and tips on staying safe for the general public. Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Centre, Johns Hopkins University (USA) Website offering information on the novel coronavirus and COVID-19 prevention strategies, recent research and an interactive map of current global epidemiological trends. Taking Care of Your Behavioral Health, SAMHSA (USA) Tips For social distancing, quarantine, and isolation during an infectious disease outbreak. BCCDC’s information page on COVID-19, British Columbia Centre for Disease Control (Canada) Provides basic information to the public on novel coronavirus and how COVID-19, the illness it causes, can spread, recognizing symptoms, what to do to protect yourself and others, what to do if you feel ill, pets and other questions. BC Government’s COVID-19 Symptom Self-Assessment Tool, British Columbia Government (Canada) This symptom-checker allows you to evaluate your own symptoms to see whether you require a test. The British Columbia government is offering tests only to select persons at present. The page also offers guidance on what to do if you are feeling ill. How to self-isolate, British Columbia Centre for Disease Control (Canada) General guidance for self-isolating for those who have COVID-19 or respiratory symptoms. Cloth face covers, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (USA) Guide on how to wear a cloth face covering and instructions on how to make cloth face coverings.
Risk Mitigation in the Context of Dual Public Health Emergencies, BC Centre on Substance Use (BC) An overview of the new interim clinical guidance in British Columbia to reduce risks for people who use substances during dual public health emergencies. COVID-19: Harm reduction and overdose response, British Columbia Centre for Disease Control (Canada) Harm reduction tips for people who use drugs, including safer drug use including how to buddy up safely, isolating yourself safely, and cleaning tips for those using or living in communal spaces. Guidance for people who use substances on COVID-19 (novel coronavirus), Yale Program in Addiction Medicine, GHJP, and Crackdown Podcast (USA/Canada) Detailed information for PWUD on how to be prepared to face COVID-19 and how to avoid infection while using drugs. Safer Drinking Tips During COVID-19, CISUR and EIDGE (BC) Advice for managing alcohol consumption, buying alcohol, and managing withdrawal. Transform Drug Policy Foundation’s page on Coronavirus and Harm Reduction, Transform Drug Policy (UK) Practical, general advice for people who use drugs on how to avoid contracting COVID-19 and minimizing risks of infection while using or in contexts where using may take place. Coronavirus – General hygiene and harm reduction tips, Crew 2000 (Scotland) General facts on coronavirus, tips for people using drugs on how to stay well and avoid harm when obtaining drugs, during use as well as afterward (managing withdrawal). Specific pointers for sex workers as well. COVID-19 Crisis: Harm reduction for people who use drugs, International Network of People who use Drugs/European Network of People who Use Drugs (United Kingdom/European Union) Customizable leaflet with the most important tips for people who use drugs, which can be customized to include local or national information on harm reduction services during the pandemic. Safer drug use during the COVID-19 outbreak, Harm Reduction Coalition/Vital Strategies (USA) General information on COVID-19 prevention and symptoms, what to do if sick, and harm reduction/safer drug use tips. COVID-19 Stimulant Use and Harm Reduction, Vital Strategies (USA) Short document detailing how stimulants and COVID-19 infection may interact, highlighting harm reduction considerations, and advising on how to use stimulants safely in the context of the pandemic. Procedures for drug service providers Provides tips for people who use drugs and people who sell drugs on doing both safely.
Alcohol and Drugs Addiction Referral Service (BC) Provincial resource for those struggling with addiction, providing current information and referral to services operating in British Columbia. AA Online Intergroup A listing of online Alcoholics Anonymous meetings and the Zoom links required to access them. In the Rooms An online recovery community that includes all traditional 12 step groups as well as SMART recovery and Lifering groups. Smart Recovery Online community for SMART recovery, an approach to fellowship that involves principles derived from cognitive behavioural therapy. Electronic AA Online AA Resources that utilize email and forum based meetings. My Recovery Online meetings as well as a library of audio and video resources for those in recovery. NA Recovery Support in the form of online meetings, chatroom, and forums as well as resources for education on addiction and recovery. XA Speakers Online repository of speaker tapes from those recovering from addiction. Recovering from addiction during a time of social distancing, Harvard Health Initiative (USA) Blog post outlining recommendations for people in recovery whose lives are affected by social distancing measures. Online resources of support for people with substance use disorders, Canadian Society of Addiction Medicine (Canada) Provides links out to and descriptions of external resources, most of which are geared toward people whose goal is to reduce their use of substances or achieve abstinence.
COVID-19: Harm reduction and overdose response, British Columbia Centre for Disease Control (Canada) Harm reduction tips for people who use drugs, including safer drug use including how to buddy up safely, isolating yourself safely, and cleaning tips for those using or living in communal spaces. COVID-19: Equity-Informed Palliative Care & Social Disadvantage, Equity in Palliative Approaches to Care (BC) Upstream equity-oriented palliative approaches to care so that existing disadvantages are not made worse through this pandemic. Caring for clients experiencing homelessness, Inner City Health Associates (Canada) Resource intended for frontline social service and healthcare workers who work with people experiencing homelessness that provides guidance on starting conversations with clients about what is important to them when thinking about their end-of-life, and providing palliative care suited to their unique needs. A Telehealth Primer An overview of some of the new capacities in the telehealth space and ways that they can be applied within organizations. Syringe services and Harm Reduction provider operations during the COVID-19 outbreak, Harm Reduction Coalition/Vital Strategies (USA) General information on COVID-19 and coronavirus and tips for community-based syringe services and harm reduction providers, including preparation of staff, planning ahead, guidance on using personal protective equipment. BC Housing COVID-19 Resources, BC Housing (Canada) Resource page covering BC’s temporary rental support, updates for community housing projects and homelessness service providers. COVID-19 Resources, Homelessness Services Association of BC (Canada) Collection of resources in different formats for management and front-line workers in shelters and outreach teams. Interim guidance for homeless service providers to plan for and respond to coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), Centers for Disease Control (USA) Advice for services working with people experiencing homelessness to plan for, prevent, communicate about, providing assistance to people affected by, and evaluating response plans for COVID-19. Preparedness, prevention and control of COVID-19 in prisons and other places of detention, World Health Organization (Switzerland) Interim guidance for prison staff, authorities and health care providers on how to manage COVID-19 in prisons and other places of detention. Guidance for preventive and responsive measures to coronavirus for jails, prisons, immigration and detention and youth facilities, Vera Institute of Justice/COCHS (USA) Advice for prevention and containment of COVID-19 in the criminal and immigration legal systems. COVID19: Gender-inclusive response strategies, Women & HIV/AIDS Initiative (Canada) A factsheet for service providers outlining some considerations when designing gender-sensitive pandemic response strategies. Assessment of SARS-CoV-2 Infection Prevalence in Homeless Shelters – Four U.S. Cities, March 27-April 15, 2020, Centers for Disease Control (USA) Study conducted in the USA that found that from 4% to 37% of residents in homeless shelters in four cities who were tested for the novel coronavirus tested positive, while lower percentages of staff tested positive. Contains recommendations for reducing spread of the illness among homeless shelter residents and staff.
Risk Mitigation in the Context of Dual Public Health Emergencies, BC Centre on Substance Use (Canada) New interim clinical guidance in British Columbia to reduce risks for people who use substances during dual public health emergencies. COVID-19: Information for Opioid Agonist Treatment Prescribers and Pharmacists, BC Centre on Substance Use (Canada) Updated guidance for OAT prescribers and pharmacists in BC. FAQ: Caring for patients on OAT during the COVID-19 pandemic (Part 1), BC ECHO on Substance Use/BC Centre on Substance Use (Canada) Questions and answers about ensuring the safe continuation of care for people on opioid agonist therapy (OAT), taken from the BC ECHO on Substance Use session of March 24, 2020. FAQ: Caring for patients on OAT during the COVID-19 pandemic (Part 2), BC ECHO on Substance Use/BC Centre on Substance Use (Canada) Questions and answers about ensuring the safe continuation of care for people on opioid agonist therapy (OAT), taken from the BC ECHO on Substance Use session of April 7, 2020. BC Pharmacists’ Association Novel Coronavirus page, BC Pharmacists’ Association (Canada) Provides guidance to pharmacy professionals on providing refills, emergency supplies of prescription drugs for continuity of care, delivery and pickup (including of Opioid Agonist Therapy), pharmacare coverage and other questions. FAQ - Subsection 56(1) Class Exemption for Patients, Practitioners and Pharmacists Prescribing and Providing Controlled Substances in Canada during the Coronavirus Pandemic, Health Canada (Canada) Backgrounder on Health Canada’s short-term subsection 56(1) exemption from the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act authorizing pharmacists to prescribe, sell, or provide controlled substances in limited circumstances, or transfer prescriptions for controlled substances. CDSA Exemption and Interpretive Guide for Controlled Substances, Health Canada (Canada) Guidance outlining temporary exemptions for prescriptions of controlled substances. Where allowed according to provincial or territorial scopes of practice, pharmacists are now permitted to extend, transfer, issue verbal orders for or deliver prescriptions of controlled substances including narcotics, controlled substances, and targeted drugs, to patients’ homes or other places where they may be self-isolating. COVID-19 resources for staff working with vulnerable populations, Vancouver Coastal Health (Canada) Guide on working with vulnerable people in the context of the COVID-19 outbreak. Risk mitigation in the context of dual public health emergencies, BC Centre on Substance Use (Canada) Clinical guidance for health care workers on supporting patients to mitigate compounded risks and enable social distancing and social isolation measures, where possible, to reduce and prevent the spread of COVID-19. COVID-19 (Coronavirus) resources for First Nations community health care providers, First Nations Health Authority (Canada) List of resources for FNHA staff on case management, infection prevention & control, cleaning, and personal protective equipment. Physician resource FAQ sheet in COVID-19, Inner City Health Associates (Canada) Short document for physicians that provides resources related to palliative care in COVID-19, grief and bereavement as well as health care worker stress and well-being.