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Children and COVID-19 Research Library

UNICEF Innocenti's curated library of COVID-19 + Children research

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Effectiveness of primary series and booster vaccination against SARS-CoV-2 infection and hospitalisation among adolescents aged 12–17 years in Singapore: a national cohort study

AUTHOR(S)
Calvin J. Chiew; M. Premikha; Chia Yin Chong (et al.)

Published: October 2022   Journal: The Lancet Infectious Diseases
Singapore offered the BNT162b2 vaccine (tozinameran; Pfizer-BioNTech) to adolescents aged 12–17 years in May 18, 2021, and extended booster vaccines to this group in Jan 21, 2022. Literature on the effectiveness of primary series and booster vaccination among adolescents is scarce outside of Europe and North America. We aimed to determine primary series and booster vaccine effectiveness against SARS-CoV-2 infection and hospitalisation among adolescents in Singapore. This national cohort study assessed the incidence of confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection and hospitalisation among adolescents aged 12–17 years vaccinated with BNT162b2 in Singapore from Sept 1 to Dec 15, 2021, during the delta (B.1.617.2) variant wave, and from Jan 21 to April 28, 2022, during the omicron (B.1.1.529) variant wave. Data were collected from official databases maintained by the Ministry of Health of Singapore. Individuals were classified as partly vaccinated (those who had received one dose and those who had received the second dose no more than 7 days previously), fully vaccinated (8 days after receiving a second dose), or boosted (8 days after receiving a third dose) and compared with unvaccinated individuals.
Predicting vaccine hesitancy among parents towards COVID-19 vaccination for their children in Singapore

AUTHOR(S)
Jia Ming Low; Chloe Wen Ting Soo; T. A. Phuong (et al.)

Published: October 2022   Journal: Frontiers in Pediatrics

There was a considerably slower uptake among children despite the high COVID-19 vaccination uptake amongst adults and adolescents in Singapore. This was concerning as unvaccinated children are at risk of severe COVID-19 infections and a source and reservoir of infections. We sought to understand the impact of social media on parental vaccine hesitancy and to determine the risk factors associated with vaccine hesitancy.  An electronic survey conducted from November 2021 to March 2022. Data on the demographic profiles of respondents and to classify them based on their vaccine hesitancy status. Data including the choice of social media used to obtain information on the COVID-19 pandemic, frequency of use were collected. Statistical significance was defined as p < 0.05.

Awareness, barriers and concerns of adolescents toward the COVID-19 vaccine: a cross-sectional study in Singapore

AUTHOR(S)
Prawira Oka; Benecia Wan Qing Thia; Shyna Zhuoying Gunalan (et al.)

Published: June 2022   Journal: Frontiers in Public Health

COVID-19 vaccination is a key public health measure to mitigate the crippling effects of the pandemic. COVID-19 vaccination began in adults and targeted adolescents at a later stage. However, medical decision-making on its uptake among the latter was unknown, which could be affected by their literacy and concerns about the vaccine. The study aimed to elucidate the awareness, concerns and barriers of adolescents toward the COVID-19 vaccine. A cross-sectional online survey using a self-developed questionnaire was conducted between June to November 2021. The adolescent participants were students from institutes of post-secondary education who were recruited via convenience sampling. The data were collated from an officially approved electronic platform, audited and analyzed. Continuous and categorical variables were expressed as mean (standard deviation) and percentages, respectively.

Pediatric COVID-19 risk factors in Southeast Asia-Singapore and Malaysia: a test-negative case–control study

AUTHOR(S)
Judith Ju Ming Wong; Chin Seng Gan; Sanghvi Heli Kaushal (et al.)

Published: April 2022   Journal: The American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene,

There is a scarcity of population-level data of pediatric COVID-19 infection from Southeast Asia. This study aims to describe and compare epidemiological, clinical, laboratory and outcome data among pediatric COVID-19 cases versus controls in two neighboring countries, Singapore and Malaysia. It used a test-negative case–control study design recruiting all suspected COVID-19 cases (defined by either clinical or epidemiological criteria) from January 2020to March 2021 admitted to two main pediatric centers in Singapore and Malaysia. Data were collected using a standardized registry (Pediatric Acute and Critical Care COVID-19 Registry of Asia).

Cite this research | Open access | Vol.: 106 | Issue: 4 | No. of pages: 1113–1120 | Language: English | Topics: Health | Tags: child health, COVID-19, disease control, health services, infectious disease, pandemic, respiratory diseases | Countries: Malaysia, Singapore
COVID-19–related life experiences, outdoor play, and long-term adiposity changes among preschool- and school-aged children in Singapore 1 year after lockdown

AUTHOR(S)
Ka Kei Sum; Shirong Cai; Evelyn Law (et al.)

Published: January 2022   Journal: JAMA Pediatrics

Despite the potential for COVID-19 infection control–related events to have an effect on child well-being, comprehensive assessments of postlockdown changes and persistent outcomes are lacking. This paper aims to survey the extent of COVID-19 lockdown–related lifestyle changes, their differences by child age and family socioeconomic status, and the potential association with child adiposity 1 year after lockdown.  A self-administered, electronic survey was introduced to 2 ongoing child cohorts (the Singapore Preconception Study of Long-term Maternal and Child Outcomes [S-PRESTO] cohort of preschool children aged 1-4.5 years and the Growing Up in Singapore Towards Healthy Outcomes [GUSTO] cohort of primary school children aged 9-10.7 years) from July 8, 2020, to September 5, 2020, which was 1 to 3 months after the end of strict universal movement restrictions (duration of 73 days ending on June 19, 2020). All active participants from S-PRESTO and GUSTO, 2 population-based, longitudinal, parent-offspring cohorts in Singapore, were invited to participate and monitored through June 15, 2021.

Evaluating rates and determinants of COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy for adults and children in the Singapore population: strengthening our community’s resilience against threats from emerging infections (SOCRATEs) cohort

AUTHOR(S)
Konstadina Griva; Kevin Y. K. Tan; Frederick H. F. Chan (et al.)

Published: November 2021   Journal: Vaccines
COVID-19 vaccines are crucial for achieving sufficient immunisation coverage to manage the pandemic, but vaccine hesitancy persists. This study aimed to investigate the prevalence and determinants of vaccine hesitancy in adults and in parents for vaccinating their children using an integrated social cognition model. A community-based cohort in Singapore [N = 1623] completed a survey (wave 25) between June and July 2021 which measured their risk perceptions, distress, trust, vaccination beliefs, and vaccine intentions/behaviours. Results indicated low rates of hesitancy (9.9%) for own vaccination, with most concerns citing side effects, safety, and hasty development. Remaining respondents were vaccinated (69%) or intended to vaccinate (21%).
Impact of work routines on parents' and children's sleep during the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown

AUTHOR(S)
Ramkumar Aishworiy; Michael Teik Chung Lim; Mahesh Babu Ramamurthy (et al.)

Published: November 2021   Journal: Sleep Medicine

This study aimed to evaluate the effects of parental sleep and work arrangements on children's sleep duration during the national lockdown period, referred to as ‘Circuit Breaker’ (CB), due to COVID-19. A cross-sectional, anonymous, online questionnaire to parents with school-going children aged between 3 and 16 years was used. Child and parental sleep duration in relation to change in parental work arrangements, housing type and number of individuals in the household as reported by parents were evaluated. Descriptive statistics and tests of comparison were used to evaluate data.

Impact of work routines on parents’ and children’s sleep during the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown

AUTHOR(S)
Ramkumar Aishworiya; Michael Teik Chung Lima; Mahesh Babu Ramamurthy (et al.)

Published: October 2021   Journal: Sleep Medicine

This paper aims to evaluate the effects of parental sleep and work arrangements on children’s sleep duration during the national lockdown period, referred to as ‘Circuit Breaker’ (CB), due to COVID-19. Cross-sectional, anonymous, online questionnaire to parents with school-going children aged between 3 to 16 years. Child and parental sleep duration in relation to change in parental work arrangements, housing type and number of individuals in the household as reported by parents were evaluated. Descriptive statistics and tests of comparison were used to evaluate data.

Factors contributing to psychological ill-effects and resilience of caregivers of children with developmental disabilities during a nation-wide lockdown during the COVID-19 pandemic

AUTHOR(S)
Tammy S. H. Lim; Mae Yue Tan; Ramkumar Aishworiya (et al.)

Published: July 2021   Journal: Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders
This study evaluated factors affecting psychological ill-effects and resilience of caregivers of children with developmental disabilities during the coronavirus pandemic. Depression, Anxiety, and Stress Scales (DASS-21) and Connor-Davidson Resilience Scale 25-item were administered. Logistic regression was used to identify factors associated with psychological ill-effects and resilience. DASS-21 depression, anxiety and stress scores were high; these were associated with difficulties with infection control measures, autism diagnosis, and need for early intervention services. For caregivers of children with ASD, our DASS-21 scores were significantly higher than non-pandemic scores locally and in other Asian sites. Resilience scores correlated inversely with DASS-21 scores. Targeted support to selected at-risk caregivers and improving resilience can help their coping.
Implementation of online home-based learning and students' engagement during the COVID-19 pandemic: a case study of Singapore mathematics teachers

AUTHOR(S)
Lee Yong Tay; Shu-Shing Lee; Kalaivani Ramachandran

Published: April 2021   Journal: The Asia-Pacific Education Researcher
The COVID-19 pandemic has forced school closure thus shifting teaching and learning towards full home-based learning (HBL). Technology plays a key role but the considerations to design online learning environments that meaningfully engage students are complex. This exploratory, qualitative study attempted to elicit eight mathematics teachers’ considerations and perspectives in designing online home-based learning lessons for the engagement of elementary and secondary students.
School closure during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic: impact on children's sleep

AUTHOR(S)
Michael Teik Chung Lim; Mahesh Babu Ramamurthy; Ramkumar Aishworiya (et al.)

Published: January 2021   Journal: Sleep Medicine
This paper aims to evaluate the sleep habits of school-going children before and during school closure in the national lockdown period (called ‘Circuit Breaker’ or CB in Singapore) due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
School closure during the Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic: impact on children’s sleep

AUTHOR(S)
Michael Teik Chung Lim; Mahesh Babu Ramamurthy; Ramkumar Aishworiya (et al.)

Published: January 2021   Journal: Sleep Medicine

To evaluate the sleep habits of school-going children before and during school closure in the national lockdown period (called ‘Circuit Breaker’ or CB in Singapore) due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Cross-sectional, anonymous, online, population-based survey questionnaire was administered to parents aged 21 years and above with children aged between 3 and 16 years attending pre-school, primary or secondary school (equivalent to kindergarten, middle and-high school) and residing in Singapore. Sleep duration in relation to various daily activities including academic activities, physical exercise, and screen time was evaluated pre-CB and during CB.

Child and adolescent psychiatry telemedicine: a Singaporean experience born in Covid-19

AUTHOR(S)
Ngar Yee Poon; Shirley Pat Fong; Shirley Pat Fong

Published: October 2020   Journal: Asian Journal of Psychiatry
Singapore was one of the first Asian countries to be affected by the Covid-19 outbreak. The article shares the experience of a consultation liaison psychiatry service within the largest women and children’s hospital in Singapore. The adoption of telepsychiatry has enabled continuous provision of care whilst reducing unnecessary exposure to COVID-19. This clinical case demonstrates the clinical utility of the telemedicine service for youth mental healthcare during the pandemic. 
Mediating effects of parental stress on harsh parenting and parent-child relationship during Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic in Singapore

AUTHOR(S)
Gerard Chung; Paul Lanier; Peace Yuh Ju Wong

Published: September 2020   Journal: Journal of Family Violence
Because of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, “Circuit-breaker” safety distancing was implemented in Singapore from April to May 2020. Schools and workplaces were closed and parents had to balance telecommuting with parenting responsibilities. Coupled with the high degree of economic uncertainty and reduced social support, these circumstances are hypothesized to increase parenting stress. Based on the Parental Stress Model, this study aims to understand how parents’ perceived impact of COVID-19 increased harsh parenting and reduced parent-child relationship closeness through the mediating effects of parenting stress.
Embracing telehealth: supporting young children and families through occupational therapy in Singapore during COVID-19

AUTHOR(S)
Hepsi Priyadharsini ; Jing Jing Chiang

Published: September 2020   Journal: World Federation of Occupational Therapists Bulletin
COVID-19 has significantly changed the way we work, play, and lead our everyday lives. It has caused serious public health, economic and social challenges, impacting individuals’ health and well-being. Our Occupational Therapy (OT) services at Child Development Unit (CDU), which is a hospital-based outpatient paediatric clinic, had to adapt to pandemic-related national policies to provide ongoing support and care for our patients and families. Healthcare services were required to leverage on teleconsultations and suspend physical consultations during the national ‘Circuit Breaker’ period. This disruption made us review our clinic workflows and service delivery options to comply with pandemic-related national measures. Our service continuity was maintained through teleconsultations, online parent workshops and developing online resources for community outreach. Though challenging, online platforms have continued to create new opportunities in providing care to our families, and supporting
Cite this research | Open access | Vol.: 76 | Issue: 2 | No. of pages: 90-93 | Language: English | Topics: Health | Tags: child care services, COVID-19 response, family assistance, health care facilities, lockdown, social distance | Countries: Singapore
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UNICEF Innocenti is mobilizing a rapid research response in line with UNICEF’s global response to the COVID-19 crisis. The initiatives we’ve begun will provide the broad range of evidence needed to inform our work to scale up rapid assessment, develop urgent mitigating strategies in programming and advocacy, and preparation of interventions to respond to the medium and longer-term consequences of the COVID-19 crisis. The research projects cover a rapid review of evidence, education analysis, and social and economic policies.