COVID-19 resources

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With 2020 Vision: lessons for health, care and well-being – social care

University of South Wales

This paper attempts to identify how social care has been affected operationally by the pandemic, the extent to which it has been perceived and presented as a key service, and the implications of Covid for the organisation and delivery of social care services in the future. All aspects of social care have been impacted and the attention of those involved in arranging and delivering care and support has had to switch to new and unprecedented challenges. The paper contends that it is disappointing that recognition of social care as an essential key service was not properly highlighted publicly until many weeks after the government’s response to the pandemic began. There is no greater example of how people receiving care and support have been affected by the response to Covid than the case of care homes. Why they were apparently not prioritised from the outset as an obvious high-risk setting remains a perplexing question. Furthermore, Staff working in all care settings have seen their caring roles affected by new risks for themselves and those in their care. The paper argues that the eventual assessment of Covid’s impact on social care must take account of how austerity has affected the strength and sustainability of the sector over the last decade or so and its resilience moving forward.

Last updated on hub: 13 January 2021

A new deal for prevention

Reform

This Reformer Thoughts brings together experts from the scientific research community and the health care sector to discuss the benefits of a preventative approach to public health and the obstacles that stand in the way of its realisation. Conversations around preventative health have come to the fore during the COVID-19 pandemic. A spotlight has been placed on health inequalities and discussions on tackling the social determinants of ill health driven forward. Contents include: prioritising prevention and patient care during the COVID-19 crisis; prevention research – creating a healthier population and reducing health inequalities; we cannot become the victims of our success on HIV testing; how can screening programmes support the prevention and elimination of disease; cancer care, inequalities and prevention; how a world leading deal is helping prevent thousands of deaths from Hepatitis C.

Last updated on hub: 13 January 2021

Policy briefing: the COVID-19 vaccination and unpaid carers (England only)

Carers UK

Unpaid carers are included in the priority lists for the COVID-19 vaccine in the same way that they are for the flu jab. This briefing sets out the position in more detail and explores recommendations for deployment of the vaccine to unpaid carers in detail.

Last updated on hub: 13 January 2021

Scotland’s wellbeing: the impact of COVID-19

Scottish Government

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a profound impact on our health, economy and society, with damaging impacts on the way of life and wellbeing of people in Scotland. This document aims to report on how COVID-19 has affected progress towards Scotland’s National Outcomes. It brings together a range of evidence sources, as well as analysis and insight, to show the impact of COVID-19 across the National Outcomes to date and its potential future impacts. Understanding the breadth of impacts should aid a range of organisations and individuals who are considering how to reset progress towards the national outcomes in light of the pandemic. The evidence presented in this report shows that the pandemic is likely to have significant and wide-ranging impacts, right across the National Outcomes. These impacts will be largely negative, but there are differences across the outcomes in terms of the direction of the changes, the depth and severity of impacts, the level of certainty over the effects and the timeframe over which they may occur. A key finding is that the impacts of the pandemic have been, and are likely to continue to be, borne unequally. Unequal outcomes between different groups existed pre-COVID, and the effects of the pandemic have only worsened this. The evidence to date suggests that health, economy, fair work and business and culture outcomes have been deeply negatively affected so far, and when the labour market impacts fully emerge, this is likely to also have a negative impact on the poverty outcome. Education and children outcomes are also likely to be 5 impacted negatively, but the evidence on the scale of the impact so far is limited and these impacts are likely to take longer to emerge

Last updated on hub: 12 January 2021

COVID-19: children, young people and families: December 2020 evidence summary

Scottish Government

This briefing is the fifth in a series of evidence summaries on the impact of COVID19 on the wellbeing of children and families in Scotland, drawing on wider UK and international research where appropriate. The emerging picture on the reopening of schools/childcare in Scotland appears to be a positive one for many children and families. There are some signs of recovery with indicative evidence of improvements in children’s emotional wellbeing, loneliness and peer and family relationships, particularly for younger age groups. However, emerging evidence on child mental wellbeing in Scotland shows that for some children, particularly for older children and young people, significant issues remain. A recurring theme is the need for more ‘recovery’ support e.g. in schools and childcare settings, particularly for child mental wellbeing. Whilst most Scottish evidence suggests a general level of satisfaction with the safe reopening of schools/childcare, there is a feeling from some young people that more could be done to enforce or increase safety measures in schools. Although social media is generally perceived by young people to be a positive means of keeping in touch with friends, there continues to be emerging evidence around increased levels of online bullying during the national lockdown. There continues to be evidence of the strain placed on parents by the pandemic and the impact that this can have on parenting and child wellbeing but there is also evidence of positive impacts of the pandemic on family relationships. In addition, the paper outlines a number of findings from Scotland and the UK about how different sub-groups of young people are experiencing the return to school/college/work, as well as new evidence on their experiences during the pandemic more generally.

Last updated on hub: 12 January 2021

Rapid response guidance note: vaccination and mental capacity (first update)

39 Essex Chambers

A general discussion examining to the legal position in relation to testing for COVID-19, especially as testing (a) starts to be more generally available; and (b) is increasingly been rolled out as mandatory in certain settings. It primarily relates to the position in England in relation to those aged 18 and above; specific advice should be sought in respect of Wales and those under 18.

Last updated on hub: 12 January 2021

Health and social care workers’ quality of working life and coping while working during the Covid-19 pandemic: analysis of positive coping and work-related quality of life as resilience and protective factors impacting on wellbeing

Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute

In early 2020, COVID-19 was designated as a pandemic. Despite our experience of pandemics (e.g., SARS), there is limited research about how health and social care staff cope with the challenges of caring for patients while potentially putting their own health at risk. The current study examined the impact of providing health and social care during COVID-19 on nurses, midwives, allied health professionals, social care workers and social workers. An online survey using validated scales and open-ended questions was used to collect data from the UK health and social care staff in May-July 2020. It received 3,290 responses, mostly from social care workers and social workers. A multiple regression analysis showed that individuals using positive coping strategies, particularly active coping, emotional support, relaxation and exercise, had higher wellbeing scores. Lower wellbeing scores were associated with disengagement and substance use as coping strategies. Better quality of working life was associated with active coping, emotional support, work family segmentation and relaxation. Participants using disengagement and family work segmentation had lower quality of working life. Positive coping strategies seem to be playing a significant role in health and social care workers’ wellbeing and quality of working life and interventions may be needed to support those who are struggling to cope.

Last updated on hub: 12 January 2021

The role of the Leeds Neighbourhood Networks during the COVID-19 pandemic

Centre for Ageing Better

The Leeds Neighbourhood Networks (LNN) support older people to remain living independently and to participate in their communities through a range of activities and services that are provided at a neighbourhood level in 37 areas of the city. This report explores how the LNNs have responded to the needs of older people, and others, in their communities during the COVID-19 pandemic; and considered the wider implications of the crisis for their work. Some common themes about the role of the LNN during the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic have emerged through the qualitative interviews and subsequent analysis. These include: the ability of the LNNs to respond to need in the community, quickly and flexibility; the embeddedness of LNNs within the wider pandemic response at a city and neighbourhood level; the COVID-19 pandemic has presented the LNN with a combination of challenges and opportunities that seem likely to shape their work in the short, medium and longer term; greater visibility and awareness of the LNNs and their work. The ability of the LNNs to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic in the ways described was underpinned by a number of inter-related enabling factors under three broad categories that sit outside of the geographic, economic and demographic contexts in which the individual NNs operate: i) resources, ii) strategy and leadership, and iii) mission, vision and values.

Last updated on hub: 12 January 2021

The impact of the coronavirus pandemic on child welfare: schools

National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children

This briefing uses insight from NSPCC Childline counselling sessions and message boards to highlight children and young people’s experiences of being away from and returning to school during the coronavirus pandemic. Key themes include: learning during lockdown; attending school during lockdown; transitioning back to school; COVID secure measures in school; being sent home to self-isolate; bullying; and support and safety. During the first lockdown children and young people contacted Childline to talk about how they missed being in school, missed seeing their friends and teachers, struggled with being out of their normal routine and were worried about getting behind with their school work. As children returned to school, some young people talked about their challenges with the transition and the new COVID control measures. Some young people said that they see school as a safe and supportive place but were finding it difficult because they didn’t have the same support as they’d had before lockdown.

Last updated on hub: 11 January 2021

The UK response to Covid-19: use of scientific advice: first report of session 2019–21

House of Commons

An analysis of the way the Government has received, and applied, scientific evidence and advice during the first period of the coronavirus pandemic up to autumn 2020. The report distils the evidence from scientists and policy makers given at a number of oral evidence sessions contemporaneous with rapidly evolving policy decisions, and from written submissions from leading experts. It considers the nature and function of official scientific advisory structures; the transparency of scientific advice; and the use of data in informing the UK's Covid-19 response. The principal conclusions and recommendations of the report are: the Government has been serious about taking scientific advice; the length of the pandemic has placed exceptional demands on the people contributing their expertise and on the structures, which were designed for shorter term emergencies; in the early stages of the pandemic a more explicit evaluation by public health authorities of the operational practices in other countries – such as test, trace and isolate measures in certain Asian countries – should have been made; although the scientific analysis that informs government decisions is now much more transparent, the evaluation of other factors that the government takes into account to determine policy – such as impacts on livelihoods and educational progress – is markedly less visible; it has been important and reassuring for the public to see and hear directly from senior scientists and that should continue; fragmentation of data across different public bodies needs to be resolved to allow the most effective response to the pandemic; The role of scientific advice in shaping the choice of operational targets has not always been clear.

Last updated on hub: 11 January 2021

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