COVID-19 resources

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Emerging evidence on COVID-19’s impact on mental health and health inequalities

The Health Foundation

Considers how mental health is being affected by the COVID-19 pandemic and examines the drivers of worsening mental health during the crisis, including social isolation, job and financial losses, housing insecurity and quality, working in a front-line service, loss of coping mechanisms, and reduced access to mental health services. The article argues that the unequal impacts of the pandemic may lead to a widening of pre-existing health inequalities, as well as affecting people who have not previously experienced poor mental health.

Last updated on hub: 06 July 2020

Emerging evidence: coronavirus and children and young people's mental health: issue 1

Evidence Based Practice Unit

A rapid review of the evidence on the key mental health challenges for children and young people during the Covid-19 pandemic, and how parents, carers, and professionals can help them to manage and minimise these challenges. It is the first of a series of reviews and covers evidence found from 1st January 2020 to 4th May 2020. The review finds that the key mental health challenges for children and young people during the pandemic include: the pandemic can influence many different aspects of mental health and may have longer-term consequences; higher than usual levels of stress, anxiety, depressive symptoms and fear have been found in children and young people; mental health challenges during the pandemic have been attributed to several events or conditions including school closures, increased time away from peers, health concerns, and media over-exposure. Support for children and young people’s mental health and wellbeing may include: promoting healthy habits such as sleeping well and daily exercise, recreating routines at home, and having clear and honest conversations about their child’s worries; small, daily acts can help promote health and emotional wellbeing in the home; teachers play a vital role in care and advocacy of positive mental health. In terms of support for those with mental health conditions, the most effective support will be adaptable and responsive to the evolving stages of the pandemic, and will involve a collaborative network which includes families, education, social care and health.

Last updated on hub: 28 September 2020

Emerging evidence: coronavirus and children and young people's mental health: issue 2

Evidence Based Practice Unit

A rapid review of the evidence on the key mental health challenges for children and young people during the Covid-19 pandemic, and how parents, carers, and professionals can help them to manage and minimise these challenges. It is the second of a series of reviews and captures research published between 5th May 2020 and 24th May 2020. The evidence suggests that the nature and duration of the pandemic and lockdown measures are having significant impacts on children and young people’s mental health, contributing to the onset as well as exacerbation of worry, fear, anxiety, depression, and posttraumatic stress. Children with pre-existing mental health and neurodevelopmental conditions and children from minority ethnic groups are at greater risk of mental health problems during the pandemic. Several social and economic factors (e.g. poverty, separation from parents and carers, domestic violence) make some young people more vulnerable to the mental health challenges of the pandemic. Researchers are emphasising the importance of monitoring the impact of the pandemic on children and young people’s mental health. As stresses and conflicting responsibilities increase, those supporting children and young people should also prioritise their own self-care in order to support the mental health and wellbeing of their families.

Last updated on hub: 28 September 2020

Emerging evidence: coronavirus and children and young people's mental health: issue 3

Evidence Based Practice Unit

A rapid review of the evidence on the key mental health challenges for children and young people during the Covid-19 pandemic, and how parents, carers, and professionals can help them to manage and minimise these challenges. It is the third of a series of reviews and captures research identified between 25th May and 14th June 2020. Key mental health challenges for children and young people during the pandemic include: mental health difficulties such as anxiety and depression have markedly increased; feelings of panic, stress, fear and fatigue amid uncertainty and a lack of control among young people are also widespread; disruption to young people’s ‘sense of control’ and ‘sense of meaning’ has contributed to growing stress and anxiety; concerns about returning to schools and colleges are also common; family dynamics, learning and education, financial stressors, social isolation and loneliness are all stressors contributing to poor mental health during the pandemic. For some, the pandemic has had positive mental health impacts due to a sense of support and potentially reduced stressors, such as social pressures at school.

Last updated on hub: 28 September 2020

Emerging evidence: coronavirus and children and young people's mental health: issue 4

Evidence Based Practice Unit

A rapid review of the evidence on the key mental health challenges for children and young people during the Covid-19 pandemic, and how parents, carers, and professionals can help them to manage and minimise these challenges. It is the fourth of a series of reviews and captures research identified between 15th June and 5th July 2020. During the extended periods of local lockdowns and home confinement, children and young people have displayed a range of psychological distress. Lack of outdoor activities, poor social support, close family members contracting the virus and gender may all be contributing factors in the development of these mental health challenges. Outdoor access and optimal housing conditions may help young people manage the negative mental health effects of the pandemic, and is especially important with young people with ADHD and epilepsy. Parents and carers can support access to healthy, stimulating activities and to accurate, age-appropriate health information. Alternative provisions, such as online counselling, are vital in providing urgent care to those who may be struggling the most during the pandemic, for example with self-harm and suicidal thoughts.

Last updated on hub: 17 February 2021

Emerging evidence: coronavirus and children and young people's mental health: issue 5

Evidence Based Practice Unit

A rapid review of the evidence on the key mental health challenges for children and young people during the Covid-19 pandemic, and how parents, carers, and professionals can help them to manage and minimise these challenges. This bulletin outlines results of a rapid review of research identified in literature searches between 13th July and 30th August. The evidence that the coronavirus pandemic is having a negative impact on the mental health of children and young people continues to build – large studies found increases in the prevalence of anxiety and depression among young people during the pandemic. Young people with pre-existing mental health conditions are particularly impacted by the pandemic and many are experiencing an increase in symptoms. During the pandemic, many young people with physical health conditions and disabilities have been affected by social isolation and have experienced negative effects on their wellbeing. However, young people with pre-existing conditions are not affected uniformly, with some experiencing lower levels of mental health difficulties than peers. There is some evidence that LGBTQ+ children and young people are experiencing greater mental health impacts during the pandemic.

Last updated on hub: 17 February 2021

Emerging evidence: coronavirus and children and young people's mental health: issue 6

Evidence Based Practice Unit

A rapid review of the evidence on the key mental health challenges for children and young people during the Covid-19 pandemic, and how parents, carers, and professionals can help them to manage and minimise these challenges. This bulletin outlines results of a rapid review of research identified in literature searches between 7th September and 1st November 2020. Evidence of considerable negative mental health impacts during the pandemic continues to emerge. However, impact varies across different populations and some positive impacts have also been seen during this period. Overall, children and young people with pre-existing health and education needs appear to be experiencing elevated mental health challenges. There is evidence that some groups of children and young people have been disproportionately affected by the pandemic in terms of their mental health. These include children who were previously psychologically maltreated, children and young people of colour, children from low income households, children in care and LGBTQ+ children and young people. Unsurprisingly, the pandemic has resulted in disruptions to physical activity, increased internet use and changes in personal habits such as eating and sleep, all of which are impacting children and young people’s mental health. Parenting and coping strategies can help counteract some of the negative impacts on children and young people’s mental health. Some children and young people have experienced a lack of access to mental health services during the coronavirus pandemic.

Last updated on hub: 17 February 2021

Emotional well-being and resilience during the COVID-19 pandemic: guidelines for social work practice

International Social Work

The global COVID-19 pandemic situation has shown the vulnerability of the population. Spain has been one of the most affected countries, given the health, social and economic repercussions. Being resilient and having the ability to adapt allows one to positively face the pandemic. In this essay, a quantitative study was conducted using a social media survey. In total, 3342 respondents participated in this survey. A number of resilience-related variables are analysed using a linear regression model. Furthermore, the potential inclusion of resilience as a transversal skill that can be used at the individual, family and community levels is also discussed.

Last updated on hub: 03 March 2021

Enabling safe and effective volunteering during coronavirus (COVID-19)

Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport

This guidance aims to help organisations and groups understand how to safely and effectively involve volunteers during the pandemic.

Last updated on hub: 23 November 2020

Encouraging multiculturalism in social work education and practice: responding to Covid 19 pandemic

Social Work Education (The International Journal)

The corona virus that originated in Wuhan, China in December 2019, now called Covid-19, has spread globally and been deemed a ‘pandemic’ by the World Health Organization (WHO). It poses many questions for social workers. Key to this are those concerning what is the profession’s role and purpose in fighting the pandemic; and how can social workers support those affected by the virus? Many healthcare organizations and government agencies are making detailed preparations for dealing with the pandemic Covid-19. All plans to date have recognized that there will undoubtedly be a greater need for resources than will be available mostly in form of mental support to people. Social workers everywhere are trying to find a way forward in the chaos. This paper is written from the point of view of a social worker from Kerala, who through this article aims to explore the impact of Covid-19 on social workers, the role social workers have been playing in this pandemic period and also the importance of understanding social work from a global and multicultural perspective.

Last updated on hub: 03 March 2021

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