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Objective: We aimed to systematically identify and critically assess the clinical practice guidelines (CPGs) for the management of critically ill patients with COVID-19 with the AGREE II instrument. Study design and setting: We searched Medline, CINAHL, EMBASE, CNKI, CBM, WanFang, and grey literature from November 2019 – November 2020. We did not apply language restrictions. One reviewer independently screened the retrieved titles and abstracts, and a second reviewer confirmed the decisions. Full texts were assessed independently and in duplicate. Disagreements were resolved by consensus. We included any guideline that provided recommendations on the management of critically ill patients with COVID-19. Data extraction was performed independently and in duplicate by two reviewers. We descriptively summarized CPGs characteristics. We assessed the quality with the AGREE II instrument and we summarized relevant therapeutic interventions. Results: We retrieved 3,907 records and 71 CPGs were included. Means (Standard Deviations) of the scores for the 6 domains of the AGREE II instrument were 65%(SD19.56%), 39%(SD19.64%), 27%(SD19.48%), 70%(SD15.74%), 26%(SD18.49%), 42%(SD34.91) for the scope and purpose, stakeholder involvement, rigor of development, clarity of presentation, applicability, editorial independence domains, respectively. Most of the CPGs showed a low overall quality (less than 40%). Conclusion: Future CPGs for COVID-19 need to rely, for their development, on standard evidence-based methods and tools.

Original publication




Journal article


Journal of Clinical Epidemiology

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