European Society of Intensive Care Medicine COVID-19

A coronavirus is one of many viruses that cause diseases in mammals and birds. In humans, coronaviruses cause respiratory tract infections that are typically mild, such as the common cold, though rarer forms such as SARS, MERS and COVID-19 can be lethal.

A novel coronavirus (nCoV) is a new strain that has not been previously identified in humans.

Common signs of infection include respiratory symptoms, fever, cough, shortness of breath and breathing difficulties. In more severe cases, infection can cause pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure and even death.

At the end of 2019, a novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) was found to be responsible for a cluster of atypical cases of pneumonia in Wuhan, China. Since then, the virus has spread both inside and outside China, and the WHO has declared this a public health emergency.

With the outbreak now present in Europe, and likely to affect many more areas over the coming months, we at ESICM have decided to help ICU professionals around the world by providing information that may make a vital contribution in the battle to contain the infection, treat the patients and to protect the frontline workers.

Learning from experience can save lives and, for this purpose, we are using this webpage to share key online resources, including manuscripts and summaries of papers published in the ICM journal and other important medical journals, podcast interviews with experts and colleagues who will discuss management strategies in place for preparedness and their own experiences on the ground.

ESICM will continue to provide the most up to date and crucial information in order to play its part and to face this global challenge.

Writing about COVID-19

As well as building up a resource of information and analysis on COVID-19, we want to ensure that we pass on any tips about what can go wrong when writing about this subject: and how to get it right! If you have experience in writing about this area and feel you have advice that would help others, please contact us at:

We’d also like to hear from you at that address if you would like to regularly contribute links to the site. If you just want to suggest links on an occasional basis, please send them to: