Smoking and COVID-19: Living systematic review

An ongoing review and Bayesian meta-analysis of the association of smoking and COVID-19

David Simons (The Royal Veterinary College, London, UK)
April 06, 2021

Initial report

During the early stages of the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic several physiological characteristics (i.e. male) and medical co-morbidities (i.e. hypertension and cardiovascular) disease were suspected to have an increased association with adverse outcomes. There was little evidence on the effect of smoking or tobacco use (D. Simons, Perski, and Brown 2020). We performed a rapid review of the evidence at the request of the Royal College of Physicians, London (David Simons, Brown, et al. 2020). This work evolved into a living review.

Living review

We chose to synthesise the evidence through a Living Systematic Review due to the rapidly evolving information base. Searches were conducted monthly and we published our pre-print manuscripts on Qeios. Version 7 (David Simons, Shahab, et al. 2020) of this work has been published in the journal Addiction, further versions have been released as post-prints.

Simons, D., O. Perski, and J. Brown. 2020. “Covid-19: The Role of Smoking Cessation During Respiratory Virus Epidemics.” The BMJ.
Simons, David, Jamie Brown, Lion Shahab, and Olga Perski. 2020. “Smoking and COVID-19: Rapid Evidence Review for the Royal College of Physicians, London (UK).” Qeios, April.
Simons, David, Lion Shahab, Jamie Brown, and Olga Perski. 2020. “The Association of Smoking Status with SARS-CoV-2 Infection, Hospitalisation and Mortality from COVID-19: A Living Rapid Evidence Review with Bayesian Meta-Analyses (Version 7).” Addiction n/a (n/a).



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For attribution, please cite this work as

Simons (2021, April 6). David Simons: Smoking and COVID-19: Living systematic review. Retrieved from

BibTeX citation

  author = {Simons, David},
  title = {David Simons: Smoking and COVID-19: Living systematic review},
  url = {},
  year = {2021}