COVID-19 resources

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Unmet clinical needs for COVID-19 tests in UK health and social care settings

PLoS ONE

There is an urgent requirement to identify which clinical settings are in most need of COVID-19 tests and the priority role(s) for tests in these settings to accelerate the development of tests fit for purpose in health and social care across the UK. This study sought to identify and prioritize unmet clinical needs for COVID-19 tests across different settings within the UK health and social care sector via an online survey of health and social care professionals and policymakers. Four hundred and forty-seven responses were received between 22nd May and 15th June 2020. Hospitals and care homes were recognized as the settings with the greatest unmet clinical need for COVID-19 diagnostics, despite reporting more access to laboratory molecular testing than other settings. Hospital staff identified a need for diagnostic tests for symptomatic workers and patients. In contrast, care home staff expressed an urgency for screening at the front door to protect high-risk residents and limit transmission. The length of time to test result was considered a widespread problem with current testing across all settings. Rapid tests for staff were regarded as an area of need across general practice and dental settings alongside tests to limit antibiotics use.

Last updated on hub: 07 January 2021

Living through a lockdown: reflections and recommendations from young people at risk of serious violence

Redthread

This report explores the impact of the Covid-19 lockdown on young people at risk of youth violence who have received support from one or more of our organisations. It is based on analysis of 41 responses from people aged between 14 and 25 – young people, some with the support of youth workers, completed a 20-question online survey, detailing their experiences during lockdown. The study identified four themes: communication and community; support; safety; and mental health. Although young people did find positives from this time, in particular being able to spend time with family and feeling like part of a community, the overwhelming impression is of a generation of young people being left behind. The young people surveyed gave an important insight into what they find important: spending time with friends and family; being given opportunities to contribute to their local community through work or volunteering; support from social workers and youth workers, including for mental health problems; increased support for vulnerable people; good and clear communication from policy makers; and feeling safe on the streets. The report makes a series of recommendations, calling on authorities to consult with young people to produce targeted messages around any upcoming local lockdown restrictions; create pathways to ongoing opportunities for community engagement and active citizenship; and co-create and publish a long-term plan for young people to ensure they do not suffer disproportionately as a result of the lockdown.

Last updated on hub: 06 January 2021

Briefing: the financial impact of COVID-19 on disabled people and their carers

Joseph Rowntree Foundation

This briefing explains why extending the £20 uplift to legacy benefits is the right thing to do. The £20-a-week uplift to Universal Credit has been a lifeline for millions of people during the coronavirus pandemic. Throughout this pandemic, people receiving legacy benefit recipients have been excluded from the uplift despite the fact that most people on legacy benefits are disabled, sick or carers. The paper explains: how disabled people's financial circumstances have become even more precarious during the COVID-19 pandemic; the rising costs disabled people face; the reduction in their incomes and the heightened challenges they face in the labour market; and the impact that extending the lifeline would have for people on legacy benefits.

Last updated on hub: 06 January 2021

Coronavirus and me: experiences of children from Black, Asian and minority ethnic groups in Wales

Children's Commissioner for Wales

This report includes the experiences of nearly 1,500 children from Black, Asian and minority ethnic groups in Wales, which were captured during the height of lockdown in May 2020. Experiences were shared as part of a Wales-wide survey led by the Commissioner which saw nearly 24,000 three to eighteen year olds take part. The report shows statistically significant results indicating disproportionately negative experiences for BAME children and young people when compared to White Welsh or British children and young people in Wales. Compared to white Welsh or white British children, 7-11 year old BAME children were more likely to say that: they needed more information and help for things like online school work, speaking to friends and family online, feeling safe at home; they were worried about their family having enough food; they were playing less; that libraries and community centres closing affected their learning; they wanted more information on Coronavirus. They were also less likely to say they knew how to get support to feel happy and well and to say they felt happy ‘most of the time’, or safe ‘most of the time’. Compared to white Welsh or white British Children, 12-18 year old BAME children were: more likely to say they want help to eat healthy food and stay active; less likely to say they were exercising outdoors; more likely to say they were worried about falling behind with their learning; more likely to say they were worried about their family having enough food; more likely to say they want more information on the rules on keeping safe; and less likely to say they felt safe ‘most of the time’.

Last updated on hub: 06 January 2021

England civil society submission to the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child to inform its List of Issues Prior to Reporting (LOIPR)

Children's Rights Alliance for England (CRAE)

This submission assesses the state of children’s rights under the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC). Written evidence was received by 32 organisations and academics, and 60 representatives from organisations participated in the oral evidence sessions. The report sets out civil society’s top concerns for the UN to investigate and reveals that children’s rights have regressed in many areas since the UN’s last examination in 2016. It also highlights that the Government’s response to the Covid-19 pandemic has not prioritised children’s rights and their voices in vital policy and legislative decisions. The report highlights that Black children have continued to suffer persistent discrimination across many aspects of their lives, including being disproportionately represented in school exclusions and in all parts of the criminal justice system. Other concerning issues highlighted in the report include: families in poverty are now living in deeper poverty than five years ago, despite rising employment prior to the pandemic; inequalities in key children’s health outcomes, such as mortality and obesity, have widened since 2016 for those from poorer and BAME backgrounds; despite increased investment, suicide is among the leading causes of death for 5 to 19-year olds; the educational attainment gap has widened as Covid-19 exacerbated the issue, with children from disadvantaged and BAME backgrounds falling further behind their peers; although there have been welcome developments to children’s social care legislation, funding for children’s and youth services has been decimated, whilst the numbers of children needing care or protection are rising, with the pandemic putting additional pressure on services; despite some positive measures, the safety and welfare of children in the criminal justice system is being put at risk and racial disparities are widening at every stage of the youth justice system; the rights of children in the immigration system have suffered as a result of the Government’s punitive Hostile Environment.

Last updated on hub: 06 January 2021

The IFS Deaton review of inequalities: a New Year’s message

Institute of Fiscal Studies

This report reflects on the impact of Covid-19 on inequalities and the lessons learned during 2020. COVID-19 seems to have shone a light on many of the issues we raised pre-pandemic, more vividly than we ever could have. At the same time, public policy responses have been of a type and magnitude previously unimaginable. Key messages include: the COVID crisis has exacerbated inequalities between the high- and low-paid and between graduates and non-graduates; the crisis has hit the self-employed and others in insecure and non-traditional forms of employment especially hard; educational inequalities will almost certainly have been exacerbated by the crisis; between March and July, mortality rates from COVID-19 were twice as high in the most deprived areas as in the least deprived; the crisis has had very different impacts on different ethnic groups – mortality rates from COVID-19 among some black groups have been twice those among the white British; through 2020, pensioners have on average reported becoming financially better off, whilst the young have borne the brunt of job and income loss.

Last updated on hub: 06 January 2021

Safeguarding pressures phase 7: interim report

The Association of Directors of Children's Services

The seventh phase of a research study which uses survey and interview data from local authorities to examine the safeguarding related pressures facing children's services across England, including changes in demand and provision of children's social care. This interim report, ahead of the study full publication in February 2021, provides key headlines including a focus on the impact of Covid-19. There was a greater variation between authorities in terms of the volume of safeguarding activities in 2019/20, resulting in an overall reduction in referrals and children in need, and increases in contacts, assessments and Section 47 Enquiries in England. The study estimates, based on local authority responses, that there has also been an increase in the number of looked after children, UASC and care leavers. Local authorities reported how their approaches to safeguarding during Covid-19 were effective. Creative uses of technology to engage and support children, families and professionals during the pandemic have been harnessed. However, digital poverty, together with ‘not knowing what is happening behind the camera’ can carry additional problems for some families and groups of children including very young children, and some children with a disability.

Last updated on hub: 05 January 2021

Coronavirus (COVID-19): organised activities for children

Scottish Government

Guidance for the safe running of organised activities for children and young people. These include organised unregulated activities and services provided indoors and outdoors for children and young people, including babies and toddlers, that are voluntary, third sector, parent or peer led or unregulated providers delivering a service or activity directly to children under 18.

Last updated on hub: 05 January 2021

Young adults in prison during the Covid-19 pandemic: a briefing from the Howard League for Penal Reform

Howard League for Penal Reform

This briefing draws on the experiences of 27 young adults across 15 prisons during the pandemic. They have described living in solitary confinement for months on end. The key point raised in this paper include: too many young adults are sent to prison, many of them are still teenagers, some of them committed their crimes as children but were convicted or sentenced as adults, many of them are particularly vulnerable, and many of them are Black and from ethnic minorities; young adults suffer from some of the worst conditions in the prison estate; the Howard League’s legal work and contact with young adults during the Covid-19 pandemic shows that this is a particularly difficult time for young adults in custody; in response to Covid-19, the regime in prisons has been severely restricted – young adults are in prolonged solitary confinement, there are no face-to-face visits, no face-to-face education and most support services have withdrawn; young adults are experiencing mental health problems as a direct result of the restrictions; young adults in the criminal justice system require a specific approach; young adults are still maturing, their brains are still developing and they have distinct characteristics and needs, the briefing argues that the terrible conditions in prison should be factored in when making decisions about sending young adults to custody and that young adults in prison must have access to a decent regime that meets their needs.

Last updated on hub: 05 January 2021

An essay collection: building for renewal: kickstarting the C19 housing recovery

Localis

This paper sets out twenty separate views from individual experts and a wide range of organisations as to how to use the primacy of place to direct a return to housing growth and, with it, renewal. Each separate essay should be read and understood in its own light as offering deep understanding and practical solutions to unlocking some of the many complex problems which the COVID-19 response currently poses to housing. The document is divided into four principal parts: Part A – the role of housing in promoting opportunity and prosperity for all; Part B – the role of investment in place in leading renewal; Part C – the role of housing in supporting the most vulnerable and engaging with society; Part D – the role of planning in creating successful and sustainable communities.

Last updated on hub: 05 January 2021

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