COVID-19 resources

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The state of child poverty 2021: the ongoing impact of COVID-19 on families and young people living in poverty

Buttle UK

This report provides insight into the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic inside the homes of the most vulnerable families in the UK. It presents findings of a qualitative study of nearly 700 nationwide frontline workers carried out in June and July 2021. It is based on a survey of support workers who have been interacting daily with families throughout the crisis. The report finds that while the circumstances of families appear to be getting gradually worse over the course of the COVID crisis, the key conclusion of this report is the significant impact on the mental health of children and young people that the ongoing crisis is having. 48% of frontline workers said the most crucial form of support for children going forward was mental health support, followed by additional educational support (9%). The survey also captured some wider context on the crisis – on family finances and the availability of support services. This data provides additional context and has been summarised in the Appendix.

Last updated on hub: 21 September 2021

Councils and communities in partnership: how counties can support a post-pandemic recovery for the voluntary and community sector

County Councils Network

This report highlights how county authorities helped local charity and volunteer groups during the early stages of the pandemic when their usual fundraising activities were put on hold. It finds that smaller and medium-sized charity groups have been most likely to look to their local authority for support during that period. Featuring case studies of councils working with their community sector across the country, the report argues that councils should be given the tools to continue their support as we look towards the recovery period in the coming months and years. The report makes the case for why support for the Voluntary and Community and Social Enterprise sector (VCSE) is a priority for local authorities. The report includes sections about: structural changes in the VCSE and managing VCSE infrastructure; reigniting volunteering; and The local authority role in supporting the VCSE. The report concludes four key recommendations for entetering recovery. Case studies in the report include: supporting the VCSE during Covid-19 and building back better, Surrey County Council; addressing lost income for the VCSE during COVID-19, East Sussex County Council; developing a pan-county VCSE approach after unitarisation, Buckinghamshire Council; supporting the growth and development of Mutual Aid Networks, North Yorkshire County Council; investing in CVS infrastructure, Staffordshire County Council; reducing monitoring burdens on small VCSE organisations, Lloyds Bank Foundation; and harnessing the upsurge in community action, Kent County Council.

Last updated on hub: 21 September 2021

Temporary medical exemptions for COVID-19 vaccination of people working or deployed in care homes

Department of Health and Social Care

A letter from the Director of Adult Social Care Delivery to local authorities, directors of adult social services, care home providers, care home managers and agencies to highlight how, on a temporary basis, people working or volunteering in care homes who have a medical reason why they are unable to have a COVID-19 vaccine, will be able to self-certify that they meet the medical exemption criteria.

Last updated on hub: 21 September 2021

Analysis of social interactions and risk factors relevant to the spread of infectious diseases at hospitals and nursing homes

PLoS ONE

Ensuring the safety of healthcare workers is vital to overcome the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. This study presents an analysis of the social interactions between the healthcare workers at hospitals and nursing homes. Using data from an automated hand hygiene system, social interactions between healthcare workers to identify transmission paths of infection in hospitals and nursing homes were inferred. A majority of social interactions occurred in medication rooms and kitchens emphasising that health-care workers should be especially aware of following the infection prevention guidelines in these places. Using epidemiology simulations of disease at the locations, this study found no need to quarantine all healthcare workers at work with a contagious colleague. Only 14.1% and 24.2% of the health-care workers in the hospitals and nursing homes are potentially infected when we disregard hand sanitization and assume the disease is very infectious. Based on the simulations, this study observed a 41% and 26% reduction in the number of infected healthcare workers at the hospital and nursing home, when it is assumed that hand sanitization reduces the spread by 20% from people to people and 99% from people to objects. The analysis and results presented here forms a basis for future research to explore the potential of a fully automated contact tracing systems.

Last updated on hub: 21 September 2021

ADASS home care and workforce snap survey

Association of Directors of Adult Social Services

The ADASS survey was carried out in August 2021 and was completed by 69 Director of Adult Social Services (45% of councils in England). They were asked how waiting lists, homecare hours delivered and people not getting the kind of care they would choose. The report suggests that nearly 300,000 people (294,353) are waiting for social care assessments, care and support or reviews. This figure has increased by just over a quarter (26%) over the last three months. Drilling down into the headline figure - 70,000 people are waiting for care assessments (up from 55,000 at the time of the ADASS Spring Survey 2021). 11,000 people have been waiting for more than six months (compared to 7,000 at the time of the ADASS Spring Survey). The number of hours of care that are needed locally but that there is not the capacity to deliver has doubled over the last six-month period. 13% of people are being offered care and support such as residential care that they would not have chosen, due to recruitment and retention issues. The findings point to funding pressures and delays in assessments from social workers and shows that whilst councils are delivering more care and support in people’s homes, people are waiting longer for vital care assessments and reviews. The findings also suggest that there are fundamental issues relating to hospital discharges, increasing requests for care and support, and the detrimental impact of decision-making on the lives of so many older and disabled people. The findings reaffirm and compound what was found in the earlier ADASS Activity Survey (June 2021) and Spring Survey (July 2021), which showed increasing requests to local authorities for care and support in their own homes, growing levels of unmet need, people waiting longer, and more people missing out on vital care and support.

Last updated on hub: 08 September 2021

A new and better normal: the impact of COVID-19 on the planning and delivery of children’s services: a rights review

Northern Ireland Commissioner for Children and Young People

This analysis assesses the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on the planning and delivery of services to children and young people in the context of the rights and best interests of children and young people in Northern Ireland with a view to aiding Northern Ireland Commissioner for Children and Young People (NICCY) in framing recommendations for future emergency planning. Data was collected via a rapid review of literature; consultation with NICCY Youth Panel and NICCY Policy and Legal Team; and interviews with professionals and practitioners representing statutory and voluntary sectors. Themes used in the analysis include impacts about: health services, education, social and personal development, and recreation services; family, home life and family support services; safety; children’s rights to information and to express their views; and youth justice. Key messages which emerged across the sectors in delivering services to children and young people during the pandemic include: restrictions were not felt equally; the pandemic amplified existing vulnerabilities among children and further exacerbated inequalities; a reliance on online service delivery has highlighted the extent of digital poverty experienced by children and the varied capacity to effectively participate and learn in an online format, high.

Last updated on hub: 07 September 2021

A new and better normal: children and young people’s experiences of the Covid 19 pandemic: summary report

Northern Ireland Commissioner for Children and Young People

This summary report reports the findings of a comprehensive assessment of the impact of the government response to the COVID-19 pandemic on the lives of children and young people across Northern Ireland. Data were collected through surveys and focus groups with a total of 4,385 young people's views considered during the research. 74 young people participated in 11 focus groups and provided four written submissions. There was a focus on including vulnerable groups including children in care, children with disabilities, and children at risk of domestic violence and/or abuse. The summary report focuses on an analysis of the Northern Ireland Commissioner for Children and Young People (NICCY) assessment of Governments’ response to the COVID-19 pandemic to date against the 11 recommendations from the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child. The report also summarises the recommendations detailed in the full report and concludes that the inequalities present in our society, the vulnerabilities associated with disabilities, physical or mental ill health, and fault lines that existed in socio-economic differences and family circumstances amongst others, have been greatly exacerbated during the pandemic. This has led to further widening of gaps in exposing the uneven impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic responses on children and young people.

Last updated on hub: 07 September 2021

A new and better normal: children and young people’s experiences of the Covid 19 pandemic: main report

Northern Ireland Commissioner for Children and Young People

This report provides a comprehensive assessment of the impact of the government response to the COVID-19 pandemic on the lives of children and young people across Northern Ireland. Data were collected through surveys and focus groups with a total of 4,385 young people's views considered during the research. 74 young people participated in 11 focus groups and provided four written submissions. There was a focus on including vulnerable groups including children in care, children with disabilities, and children at risk of domestic violence and/or abuse. Key themes covered in the analysis include: poverty, physical and mental health; education; play, leisure, and social engagement; family life and alternative care; safeguarding; access to information and participation and youth justice. The report also includes an analysis of the Northern Ireland Commissioner for Children and Young People (NICCY) assessment of Governments’ response to the COVID-19 pandemic to date against the 11 recommendations from the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child. The report makes several recommendations under each of the key themes and concludes that the inequalities present in our society, the vulnerabilities associated with disabilities, physical or mental ill health, and fault lines that existed in socio-economic differences and family circumstances amongst others, have been greatly exacerbated during the pandemic. This has led to further widening of gaps in exposing the uneven impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic responses on children and young people.

Last updated on hub: 07 September 2021

The impact of the coronavirus pandemic on young women on low incomes

Women’s Budget Group

This briefing explores the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, and what life is really like, for young women in low-income households in the UK. This briefing presents the findings from a survey of 1026 young people aged 18-30 (505 men and 517 women), with 176 women and 157 men with household incomes below £20,000, 179 women and 158 men with household incomes between £20,000-£39,999 and 132 women and 151 men with household incomes above £40,000. Data were collected by Survation with fieldwork conducted 3rd-4th June 2021. The report provides a snapshot of the experiences of young women from low-income households and how their experiences differ to those of young women from higher-income households and young men of all income levels. Key finding were that young women living in households that earn less than £20,000 a year have become further disadvantaged over the course of the pandemic compared to young women living in higher income households and men of all income levels. In addition, young women on low incomes reported worsening finances and mental health, a greater fear of job loss when the furlough scheme ends, and lower intentions to enrol in further education or university. The briefing includes section about financial impacts and work, education and future plans and makes four key recommendations related to stronger safety net, sectoral support, investment in care and more representation.

Last updated on hub: 06 September 2021

Community champions: a rapid scoping review of community champion approaches for the pandemic response and recovery

Public Health England

Summary of existing evidence on community champion approaches and discussion of implications, including for Covid-19 pandemic response and recovery. Community champions or health champions are active community members who draw on their local knowledge, skills, and life experience to promote health and wellbeing or improve conditions in their local community. This rapid scoping review pulls together and considers existing research evidence on community champions approaches, both from the UK and internationally. This includes research on previous UK champion programmes focused on health improvement and international studies of champion type roles in HIV prevention and outbreak control. Key findings include that: champion approaches are highly relevant to reducing health inequalities in a range of contexts; there a range of different models and ways of building community champion programmes; and these approaches can be applied flexibly to meet local needs and assets. Furthermore, champions can be key connectors in communities, but these roles do not operate in isolation and need to be embedded in effective community engagement strategies. Examples from practice are used to illustrate and strengthen these findings wherever possible. Implications, including for pandemic response and recovery are discussed.

Last updated on hub: 06 September 2021

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