COVID-19 resources

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Protecting disabled people’s rights during COVID-19: good practice from across the Commonwealth

Commonwealth Forum of National Human Rights Institutions

This report aims to identify the key challenges and issues faced by disabled people during the COVID-19 pandemic, and their human rights implications; demonstrate how Commonwealth national human rights institutions (NHRIs) are using their unique powers to protect, promote and raise awareness of the rights of disabled people during the pandemic; identify common features in the responses of NHRIs, as well as areas where gaps may exist; and promote the work of Commonwealth NHRIs alongside that of other organisations, in documenting the experiences and challenges faced by disabled people during the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite the vastly different regional and national contexts in which they work, CFNHRI members share many of the same concerns about the threat that COVID-19 poses to disabled people and their rights. Recurring themes from the submissions covered in this report call attention to the importance of: dedicated processes to consult with and involve disabled people in decision-making; disaggregated data, particularly in areas of life where people may face multiple disadvantages because of their intersecting characteristics; and ensuring that policies and services are accessible by design, and that information is available in accessible formats. These issues are not unique to this pandemic, nor are they only relevant in emergency responses. Entrenched gaps in processes, data and design, where institutions have failed to examine the needs of disabled people, are longstanding and evident across many different sectors.

Last updated on hub: 03 May 2021

Provider Hubs - Hertfordshire County Council

Hertfordshire County Council

Hertfordshire County Council has rapidly set up a ‘provider hub’ to support its near 800 social care providers. The Hub is jointly run by Hertfordshire County Council and Hertfordshire Care Providers Association to provide professional advice and support to all care organisations working in the frontline in the fight against COVID-19. The Hub is also the central point for collecting and providing key information and data for the adult social care board and supports the many direct payment holders who can contact directly to get advice about their direct payments and the flexibility the council can support them with.The full case study can be found in the Department for Health and Social Care action plan which is linked to this item and was published on 15 April 2020.

Last updated on hub: 22 July 2020

Providing care and support at home to people who have had COVID-19

Social Care Institute for Excellence

Quick guide to help home care workers and personal assistants (PAs) to provide care and support to people who have left hospital after having COVID-19.

Last updated on hub: 03 November 2020

Providing person-centred support for residents living with dementia who need to be isolated in care homes during the COVID-19 crisis

Association for Dementia Studies, University of Worcester

This information sheet supports care homes catering for people living with dementia during the COVID-19 pandemic. The document covers a range of strategies to help a person living with dementia understand the COVID-19 situation; to create an inviting isolation space; to help occupy the person in an isolation space; to use the environment to encourage isolation; to meet people’s need for human contact; and to encourage a person to comply with infection control requirements. It brings together current best practice, setting out general advice only. Each resident should be assessed on an ongoing and individual basis to find the best response and the latest national sector guidance should be followed.

Last updated on hub: 24 June 2020

Psychological, social, and situational factors associated with COVID‐19 vaccination intentions: a study of UK key workers and non‐key workers

British Journal of Health Psychology

Objectives: Vaccine hesitancy is a growing concern and threat to public health. This research will begin to examine the relative influence of relevant psychological, social, and situational factors on intent to engage with a hypothetical COVID‐19 vaccine among key workers and non‐key workers. Design: Cross‐sectional. Methods: The study utilized a sample of UK adults who completed the 1‐month follow‐up of The COVID‐19 Psychological Wellbeing Study during April/May 2020 and indicated having not been previously diagnosed with COVID‐19 (key workers n = 584; not key workers n = 1,021). These groups were compared in relation to their intentions to vaccinate, perceived risk of infection, and symptom severity. Binary logistic regression was used to examine predictors of vaccine hesitancy. Results: Overall, 74.2% of the sample (76.2% key workers, 73.1% non‐key workers) indicated they would accept a COVID‐19 vaccine in future. Key workers (in particular health and social care workers) had a higher perceived risk of becoming infected in the coming months. For key workers, being female and perceiving oneself as having relatively low infection risk in the next 6 months was associated with increased likelihood of vaccine hesitancy. For non‐key workers, however, being aged 25–54, having a low or average income and not knowing someone diagnosed with COVID‐19 were associated with hesitancy. Conclusions: The proportion of individuals willing to accept a vaccine is encouraging but there is much room for improvement. Given the unique predictors of vaccine hesitancy in each group, public health campaigns may benefit from targeted messaging.

Last updated on hub: 10 May 2021

Psychosocial impact of COVID-19 nursing home restrictions on visitors of residents with cognitive impairment: a cross-sectional study as part of the engaging remotely in care (ERiC) project

Research published in Frontiers in Psychiatry by O'Caoimh, R. et al., October 2020. Background: COVID-19 has disproportionately affected older people. Visiting restrictions introduced since the start of the pandemic in residential care facilities (RCFs) may impact negatively on visitors including close family, friends, and guardians. This study examined the effects of COVID-19 visiting restrictions on measures of perceived loneliness, well-being, and carer quality of life (QoL) amongst visitors of residents with and without cognitive impairment (CI) in Irish RCFs. Methods: This study created a cross-sectional online survey. Loneliness was measured with the UCLA brief loneliness scale, psychological well-being with the WHO-5 Well-being Index and carer QoL with the Adult Carer QoL Questionnaire (support for caring subscale). Satisfaction with care (“increased/same” and “decreased”) was measured. A history of CI was reported by respondents. Sampling was by convenience with the link circulated through university mail lists and targeted social media accounts for 2 weeks in June 2020. Results: In all, 225 responses were included of which 202 noted whether residents had reported CI. Most of the 202 identified themselves as immediate family (91%) and as female (82%). The majority (67%) were aged between 45 and 64 years. Most (80%) reported that their resident had CI. Approximately one-third indicated reduced satisfaction (27%) or that restrictions had impaired communication with nursing home staff (38%). Median loneliness scores were 4/9, well-being scores 60/100 and carer QoL scores 10/15. Visitors of those with CI reported significantly lower well-being (p = 0.006) but no difference in loneliness (p = 0.114) or QoL (p = 0.305). Reported CI (p = 0.04) remained an independent predictors of lower WHO-5 scores, after adjusting for age, sex, RCF location, and dementia stage (advanced), satisfaction with care (reduced), and perception of staff support measured on the Adult Carer QoL Questionnaire. Conclusion: This survey suggests that many RCF visitors experienced low psychosocial and emotional well-being during the COVID-19 lockdown. Visitors of residents with CI report significantly poorer well-being as measured by the WHO-5 than those without. Additional research is required to understand the importance of disrupted caregiving roles resulting from visiting restrictions on well-being, particularly on visitors of residents with CI and how RCFs and their staff can support visitors to mitigate these.

Last updated on hub: 18 November 2020

Psychosocial impact on frontline health and social care professionals in the UK during the COVID-19 pandemic: a qualitative interview study

BMJ Open

Objectives To explore the psychosocial well-being of health and social care professionals working during the COVID-19 pandemic. Design This was a qualitative study deploying in-depth, individual interviews, which were audio-recorded and transcribed verbatim. Thematic analysis was used for coding. Participants This study involved 25 participants from a range of frontline professions in health and social care. Setting Interviews were conducted over the phone or video call, depending on participant preference. Results From the analysis, this study identified 5 overarching themes: communication challenges, work-related stressors, support structures, personal growth and individual resilience. The participants expressed difficulties such as communication challenges and changing work conditions, but also positive factors such as increased team unity at work, and a greater reflection on what matters in life. Conclusions This study provides evidence on the support needs of health and social care professionals amid continued and future disruptions caused by the pandemic. It also elucidates some of the successful strategies (such as mindfulness, hobbies, restricting news intake, virtual socialising activities) deployed by health and social care professionals that can support their resilience and well-being and be used to guide future interventions.

Last updated on hub: 15 March 2021

Public health and human rights: ‘valuable people at risk’

National Mental Capacity Forum

This webinar explores what it means to get the balance right between protecting public health and respecting the human rights of vulnerable people in the context of COVID-19 pandemic.

Last updated on hub: 21 September 2020

Public health annual report 2021: rising to the challenges of COVID-19

Local Government Association

This year's annual report looks back at what public health has helped to achieve and what could have been done better during the pandemic. It also looks to the future – the new UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA), the publication of the Department of Health and Social Care's (DHSC) white paper, and the significant organisational changes these could bring. The report describes some of the main themes emerging from work on the pandemic and summarises key priorities which have implications for the future of public health, and the task of building back fairer.

Last updated on hub: 12 April 2021

Public mental health and wellbeing and Covid-19

Local Government Association

This briefing provides advice for Directors of Public Health about the public mental health and wellbeing issues arising from the Covid-19 outbreak. Directors of Public Health are leading the local public mental health and wellbeing response. It includes a diagram which shows potential mental health impacts of COVID-19 across the life course. It highlights potential short term (for the duration of the epidemic), medium-term (2 year) and long-term impacts, which could result in increased demand on the NHS and local government. The briefing also outlines key principles of local responses, which include; whole system approaches, with agencies working together; interventions targeting the whole population, as well as those at risk; and building on existing programmes and initiatives that promote wellbeing.

Last updated on hub: 21 May 2020

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