The HIFA list is proving especially helpful at this challenging time and it is good to see journals that are subscription only making their COVID-19 content freely available. With that in mind, I think it would be helpful to have a clear statement from the open access publishers, in particular, perhaps, BiomedCentral and PLOS about what they are doing. Are they continuing to charge Article Processing Charges on COVID-19 articles? I hope not.
I think it will be bizarre and very sad if publishers at the forefront of open access are continuing to make researchers pay to publish their COVID-19 research with them, while the subscription journals are making their relevant content free to all and putting some of it into Pubmed Central. I hope that open access publishers do not now have more barriers in the way of making information from COVID-19 research free to all than the subscription-based journals.
Professor Mike Clarke
Director, Northern Ireland Methodology Hub
Research Director, Evidence Aid
Evidence Aid and COVID-19: special summaries of relevant research evidence are available free at www.evidenceaid.org/coronavirus-covid-19-evidence-collection