COVID-19 resources

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Family in the age of COVID‐19

Family Process

Editorial. The coronavirus has had a profound effect on the world in a multitude of ways. By the time this appears (written in mid‐April 2020), we probably will have some better sense of its ultimate impact. This essay centres on only one meaning of its effects: How it has impacted family life. The editorial discussed both direct and indirect impacts on family life. The editorial suggests that reactions to COVID‐19 present a once in a lifetime international social experiment about family life, perhaps the most widespread social experiment of all time.

Last updated on hub: 20 June 2020

A role for lived experience mental health leadership in the age of Covid-19

Journal of Mental Health

Editorial. In 2020 an invisible assassin has swept across the world, creating chaos, confusion and uncertainty. Covid 19 has taken many people’s health, some people’s lives and the lives of loved ones. It has destroyed livelihoods and put the financial futures of billions at risk. At a time when there is a global mental health crisis, the lived experience community has answers that are highly appropriate to the trauma-induced situation we’re all facing. The editorial considers the role for lived experience mental health leadership in the age of Covid-19.

Last updated on hub: 20 June 2020

Including people with disability in the COVID-19 outbreak emergency preparedness and response in China

Disability and Society

With the outbreak of the COVID-19, China had to declare a public health emergency within a short time. In order to control and prevent further spread of the disease, China activated the highest emergency response level and has been implementing many draconian measures based on the Law on Prevention and Treatment of Infectious Diseases (LPTID). However, the LPTID lacks a disability perspective and overlooks the needs of people with disabilities during emergencies to a large extent. Combining the law and disability perspectives, this article analyzes different Articles of the LPTID and points out its inadequacies regarding the emergency preparedness and response plans in the midst of a major public health crisis. Besides, the experiences of some people with disabilities being affected are shared in the article. This article calls for nations to ensure amendments of their legal frameworks regarding public health and emergency preparedness fully engage a rights-based disability perspective.

Last updated on hub: 20 June 2020

COVID-19 and disabled people: perspectives from Iran

Disability and Society

This is a Current Issue because, at the time of writing, COVID-19 has affected many countries and territories worldwide and Iran ranked early on as one of the most seriously affected countries. As a result, this pandemic crisis poses a considerable challenge to people with disabilities in Iran. This short article shows the different challenges people with disabilities are facing during the COVID emergency in Iran. In addition, it provides several recommendations, based on the perspective and experience in Rehabilitation and Health Policy Centres, to improve the situation in the content of the COVID-19 breakout.

Last updated on hub: 20 June 2020

Challenges posed by COVID-19 to the health of people with disabilities living in residential care facilities in Romania

Disability and Society

On the 19th of March 2020, a Human Rights NGO demanded urgent measures be taken to protect the right to health of people with disabilities in residential care facilities - including psychiatric hospitals and residential care facilities - in Romania (Center for Legal Resources (CLR) 2020a). This article explains the legitimacy of this demand in the Romanian context, building on my own experience as an ethnographer of residential care institutions for people with disabilities, adding new substantive clarifications to the need to act in a coordinated manner to prevent serious harm to the health and wellbeing of people with disabilities in residential care facilities during the COVID-19 outbreak in Romania and in other countries faced with similar situations. The evidence presented is limited to the Romanian case which the author is familiar with on the grounds of the ethnographic and policy research that was conducted on deinstutionalization and residential care in Romania. Nevertheless, the author thinks that similar dynamics might be at play in other East European countries, as well as other countries, where large and medium sized residential institutions for people with disabilities and for elderly people or other vulnerable and marginalized populations are still being operated.

Last updated on hub: 20 June 2020

Practical implications of physical distancing, social isolation, and reduced physicality for older adults in response to COVID-19

Journal of Gerontological Social Work

The public health response to the COVID-19 pandemic involves physical distancing measures which have the potential to lead to increased social isolation among older adults. Implications of social isolation are potentially wide-ranging including poorer health outcomes, disruption of social interactions and routines, reduced meaningful activity, reduced social and emotional support, loneliness, potential for grief, loss, and trauma responses, limited access to resources, and reduced physicality. Social workers must advocate for the value of social relationships and identify creative ways to enhance the social connections of older adults during pandemic responses or other situations that require physical distancing measures.

Last updated on hub: 20 June 2020

Older workers in the time of COVID-19: the senior community service employment program and implications for social work

Journal of Gerontological Social Work

It has long been the goal of many gerontological social work scholars to increase the ability and opportunity for people to be engaged in paid and unpaid work throughout the life course. Yet the COVID-19 pandemic is revealing and exacerbating the financial insecurity of many older adults. This paper reviews information related to older workers and how they might be affected by this pandemic and its aftermath, paying particular attention to the most socioeconomically and physically vulnerable older workers. The reserchers also offer first-hand experiences from our careers working with and conducting scholarship on older workers, paying particular attention to recent actions by many in the Senior Community Service Employment Program (SCSEP) network to provide paid sick leave to its low-income, older adult participants. The paper concludes with implications for social work scholarship and teaching, noting the uptick in technology use among older adults and the disparities that remain, as well as teaching that integrates discussions on the lifelong and cumulative effects of inequalities and marginalization and the need for additional researcher, student, and community collaborations.

Last updated on hub: 20 June 2020

Self-direction of home and community-based services in the time of COVID-19

Journal of Gerontological Social Work

During the COVID-19 pandemic, nursing homes and assisted living facilities have accounted for over 20% of all infections, adult day care and other congregate sites have closed, and traditional home care agencies are facing staff shortages. In this environment, self-direction of home and community-based services, where the participant can hire their own staff and manage a budget that can be used for a broad range of goods and services including home modifications and assistive devices, is seen as a promising intervention. Using self-direction participants can minimize the number of people who enter their homes and pay close family and friends who were already providing many hours of informal care, and now may be unemployed. The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services is encouraging this approach. This commentary presents information on how states have responded using the new CMS Toolkit by expanding who can be a paid caregiver, increasing budgets and broadening the kinds of items that can be purchased with budgets to include items like personal protective equipment and supports for telehealth. This Commentary concludes with policy and research questions regarding how the delivery of long-term services and supports (LTSS) may change as the world returns to“normal”.

Last updated on hub: 20 June 2020

COVID-19 pandemic: workforce Implications for gerontological social work

Journal of Gerontological Social Work

The COVID-19 pandemic has been challenging for people of all ages but particularly devastating to adults 65 and older, which has highlighted the critical need for ensuring that all social workers gain the knowledge and skills necessary to work with this population. While there is a critical shortage of gerontological social workers and we must continue to increase that number, we cannot wait for this to occur. In this commentary, the authors call for infusing the current social work curricula with aging content; providing current social workers with trainings on aging practice; and all social work practitioners, faculty, and researchers to address four specific areas that have gained prominence due to the impact of COVID-19: ageism, loneliness and social isolation, technology, and interprofessional practice, in their respective areas.

Last updated on hub: 20 June 2020

Informal home care providers: the forgotten health-care workers during the COVID-19 pandemic

Lancet

Editorial states that during the current coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, informal home care provision and challenges faced by care providers, excluding those who are formal and paid, in the home context have largely been overlooked. Also makes the point that in public health emergencies, informal home care providers are a crucial human resource that improves the community’s health-care capacity, especially in regions with an ageing population and areas with suboptimal health-care systems. The comment piece suggests that for home care to better support health needs during extreme events, urgent research related to social and economic impacts of home care is needed to update policies and improve health support programmes. The piece also provides a list of research priorities relevant to informal home care providers.

Last updated on hub: 20 June 2020

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