COVID-19 resources

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COVID-19 has made children more worried, scared, and lonely

YouGov

Findings from a YouGov Children’s Omnibus survey of 1,013 UK children between the ages of 6 and 15 showing how the COVID-19 pandemic has affected children across the UK during 2020. Two in five children reported feeling lonelier as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic; and girls are more likely than boys to have felt more worried, stressed, scared, trapped, lonely and tired as a result of the pandemic.

Last updated on hub: 19 January 2021

Challenging behavior of nursing home residents during COVID-19 measures in the Netherlands

Aging and Mental Health

Objectives: From the perspective of the nursing home (NH) practitioners, to gain understanding of (1) whether challenging behavior in NH residents changed during the COVID-19 measures, (2) whether the practitioners’ involvement in the treatment of challenging behavior changed, (3) what can be learned from the experience of NH staff. Methods: A mixed methods study with a survey in 323 NH practitioners (psychologists, elderly care physicians, nurse practitioners) in the Netherlands, and in-depth interviews in 16 NH practitioners. Nonparametric analyses were used to compare estimated proportions of residents with increased and with decreased challenging behavior. Content analyses were conducted for open-ended questions and in-depth interviews. Results: Participants reported changes in challenging behavior with slightly higher proportions for increased (Q1/Mdn/Q3: 12.5%, 21.7%, 30.8%) than for decreased (8.7%, 14.8%, 27.8%, Z = –2.35, p = .019) challenging behavior. Half of the participants reported that their work load increased and work satisfaction worsened during the measures. Different strategies were described to respond to the effects of COVID-19 measures, such as video calls, providing special areas for residents to meet their loved ones, adjusting activities, and reducing the exposure to negative news. Conclusions: Because COVID-19 measures resulted in both increased and decreased challenging behavior in NH residents, it is important to monitor for their potential long lasting effects. Increased work load and worsened work satisfaction of the NH staff, together with the changes in type of challenging behavior, indicate that the harmful effects of the anti-pandemic measures should be taken seriously.

Last updated on hub: 18 January 2021

The impact of COVID-19 pandemic on long-term care facilities worldwide: an overview on international issues

BioMed Research International

The COVID-19 pandemic had a great negative impact on nursing homes, with massive outbreaks being reported in care facilities all over the world, affecting not only the residents but also the care workers and visitors. Due to their advanced age and numerous underlying diseases, the inhabitants of long-term care facilities represent a vulnerable population that should benefit from additional protective measures against contamination. Recently, multiple countries such as France, Spain, Belgium, Canada, and the United States of America reported that an important fraction from the total number of deaths due to the SARS-CoV-2 infection emerged from nursing homes. The scope of this paper was to present the latest data regarding the COVID-19 spread in care homes worldwide, identifying causes and possible solutions that would limit the outbreaks in this overlooked category of population. It is the authors’ hope that raising awareness on this matter would encourage more studies to be conducted, considering the fact that there is little information available on the impact of the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic on nursing homes. Establishing national databases that would register all nursing home residents and their health status would be of great help in the future not only for managing the ongoing pandemic but also for assessing the level of care that is needed in this particularly fragile setting.

Last updated on hub: 18 January 2021

UK poverty 2020/21: the leading independent report

Joseph Rowntree Foundation

This is the 2020/21 edition of JRF’s annual report on the nature and scale of poverty across the UK and how it affects people. It highlights early indications of how poverty has changed in our society since the start of the coronavirus outbreak, as well as the situation revealed by the latest poverty data, collected before the coronavirus outbreak. It examines overall changes to poverty, with sections looking at the impact of work, the social security system and housing. Before coronavirus, 14.5 million people in the UK were caught up in poverty, equating to more than one in five people. Child poverty and in-work poverty had been on the rise for several years and some groups were disproportionately likely to be pulled into poverty. Many of those groups already struggling most to stay afloat have also borne the brunt of the economic and health impacts of COVID-19. These include: part-time workers, low-paid workers and sectors where there are much higher rates of in-work poverty, such as accommodation and food services; Black, Asian and minority ethnic households; lone parents – mostly women, many of whom work in hard-hit sectors – who are more reliant on local jobs, and are more likely to have struggled with childcare during lockdown; private renters, who have higher housing costs, and social renters, who tend to have lower incomes, both leading to higher poverty rates; areas of the UK where there were already higher levels of unemployment, poverty and deprivation. The report calls on the Government to be bold and compassionate as it decides how to redesign policies on work, social security and housing so that they work better for everyone after coronavirus.

Last updated on hub: 18 January 2021

Pandemic pressures: why families on a low income are spending more during Covid-19

Resolution Foundation

This note explores why low-income families report spending more, not less, during the pandemic. It brings together the findings from two online surveys of a representative sample of working-age adults in the UK and a number of vivid accounts from parents and carers themselves, drawn from the ongoing ‘Covid Realities’ participatory research programme. The evidence presented in this note shines a light on the absence of targeted, adequate support for families on a low income, who today face the combined insecurity of Covid-19 and increased financial pressure. Moreover, it underlines the importance of understanding the differential experiences of the pandemic. Key findings include: during the summer and autumn 2020, families with children estimated to be in the lowest pre-pandemic income quintile were twice as likely to report an increase in spending (36 per cent) than a decrease (18 per cent); having children at home more has meant higher spending on food, energy and ways to entertain or distract children when so many outdoor leisure activities have been curtailed; remote schooling has proven very expensive, especially for those families that have had to buy a laptop or arrange for broadband access, for example; the cost of feeding a family on a low income has risen during the pandemic; in September 2020, half of adults with less than £1,000 in savings report drawing down on them since February, and over half of adults in the lowest-income quintile using borrowing to a greater extent than they did pre-pandemic to cover everyday living costs. With tough new restrictions now in place to contain the spread of the more transmissible Covid-19 variant, parents on a low income face another difficult period without school or childcare, when costs once again look set to increase.

Last updated on hub: 18 January 2021

Delivering good practice initial assessments of family and friends carers in the context of Covid-19. An appendix to the Initial family and friends care assessment: a good practice guide

Family Rights Group

The Initial Family and Friends Care Assessment: A good practice guide is designed to be used by local authorities to support decision making as to whether a family member or friend might be a potentially realistic option to be a carer for a child who cannot live safely with their parents. It sets out the key issues to be addressed in the very early stages of identifying potential carers. However, delivering good practice in the current circumstances is challenging in several ways: social workers contact with, and assessments of, potential carers may need to be through phone and virtual means; potential carers may be having to cope with a range of challenges resulting from Covid-19 as well as the impact of the crisis in their family that has resulted in a child or children needing long term care from a family member; family members who might be suitable may not be in a position to offer immediate care because of the health risks they are dealing with; family members may be dealing with a number of serious questions about their future because of the broad uncertainties resulting from the pandemic. The purpose of this short document is to assist practitioners in these unique circumstances to produce a robust and balanced assessment which is appropriately child and family centred and which can support sound decision-making.

Last updated on hub: 18 January 2021

The impact of the COVID‐19 pandemic on the mental health and well‐being of children and young people

Children and Society

The COVID‐19 pandemic has had an enormous impact across the world. In this discussion paper, we examine the effect that lockdown has had on the mental health and well‐being of children and young people. We write from a UK perspective in the light of the international evidence. Many of the discussion points raised resonate globally. We discuss how these issues can be dealt with and set out potential solutions as we emerge from this global crisis.

Last updated on hub: 16 January 2021

The COVID-19 pandemic and long-term care: what can we learn from the first wave about how to protect care homes?

Eurohealth

The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted and exacerbated pre-existing problems in the long-term care sector. Based on examples collected from the COVID-19 Health System Response Monitor (HSRM) and the International Long-term care Policy Network (LTCcovid), this article aims to take stock of what countries have done to support care homes in response to COVID-19. By learning from the measures taken during the first wave, governments and the sector itself have an opportunity to put the sector on a stronger footing from which to strengthen long-term care systems.

Last updated on hub: 15 January 2021

Reflections on practice during a pandemic: how do we continue to ensure effective communication during the COVID‐19 pandemic?

Child Abuse Review

Personal reflection of a social worker who began a role in the Effective Child Protection Project as a practice mentor to social workers across the Children and Families Service in Gwynedd, in April 2019. This report considers the authors reflections on how communication has been affected in social work due to the pandemic.

Last updated on hub: 15 January 2021

New development: managing the Covid-19 pandemic – from a hospital-centred model of care to a community co-production approach

Public Money and Management

Covid-19 is not only a crisis of intensive care but a social and humanitarian crisis. Until mass vaccination is undertaken, control of contagion will rely on responsible behaviour by citizens. Strategies for fighting Covid-19 in different regions of Italy have shown that an area-specific approach, not just hospital-focused, pays off. This article proposes a community co-production approach, in the light of discussions with politicians and key health decision-makers and actors. Preventing the spread of Covid-19 can mainly be achieved by social, not medical, means. Decision-makers should be aware that a strategy of relying only on the acute health system, placing a high burden on community-based public services, without any systematic attempt to co-ordinate or support the expansion of these services, is likely to fail. This article explains the benefits of a community co-production strategy.

Last updated on hub: 15 January 2021