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Children and COVID-19 Research Library

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

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Health at a glance: Latin America and the Caribbean 2020
This report presents key indicators on health and health systems in 33 Latin America and the Caribbean countries. This first Health at a Glance publication to cover the Latin America and the Caribbean region was prepared jointly by OECD and the World Bank. Analysis is based on the latest comparable data across almost 100 indicators including equity, health status, determinants of health, health care resources and utilisation, health expenditure and financing, and quality of care. The editorial discusses the main challenges for the region brought by the COVID‑19 pandemic, such as managing the outbreak as well as mobilising adequate resources and using them efficiently to ensure an effective response to the epidemic. An initial chapter summarises the comparative performance of countries before the crisis, followed by a special chapter about addressing wasteful health spending that is either ineffective or does not lead to improvement in health outcomes so that to direct saved resources where they are urgently needed.
Social protection and jobs responses to COVID-19 : a real-time review of country measures

AUTHOR(S)
Ugo Gentilini; Mohamed Almenfi; Pamela Dale

Institution: The World Bank
Published: December 2020
Some key finds from this "living paper" include : As of April 23, 2020, a total of 151 countries (18 more since last week) have planned, introduced or adapted 684 social protection measures in response to COVID-19 (Coronavirus). This is a ten-fold increase in measures since the first edition of this living paper (March 20). New countries include Angola, Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, Aruba, Azerbaijan, Bahamas, Belarus, Bermuda, Brunei, Chad, Grenada, Libya, Montserrat, Nigeria, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Seychelles, St Maarten, and UAE. Social assistance transfers are the most widely used class of interventions (60 percent of global responses, or 412 measures). These are complemented by significant action in social insurance and labor market-related measures (supply-side measures). Among safety nets, cash transfer programs remain the most widely used safety net intervention by governments. Overall, cash transfers include 222 COVID-related measures representing one-third of total COVID-related social protection programs.
Learning poverty in the time of COVID-19: a crisis within a crisis

AUTHOR(S)
Joao Pedro Azevedo

Institution: The World Bank
Published: December 2020
This brief summarizes the results of simulations estimating the potential impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic in learning poverty. Of 720 million primary school age children, 382 million are learning poor, either out of school or below the minimum proficiency level in reading. COVID-19 could boost that number by an additional 72 million to 454 million. In a post-COVID-19 scenario of no remediation and low mitigation effectiveness for the effects of school closures, simulations show learning poverty increasing from 53 percent of primary-school-age children to 63 percent.
COVID-19 and food security in Ethiopia: do social protection programs protect?

AUTHOR(S)
Kibrom A. Abay; Guush Berhane; John Hoddinott (et al.)

Institution: The World Bank
Published: November 2020
This paper assesses the impact of Ethiopia's flagship social protection program, the Productive Safety Net Program on the adverse impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on the food and nutrition security of households, mothers, and children. The analysis uses pre-pandemic, in-person household survey data and a post-pandemic phone survey. Two-thirds of the respondents reported that their incomes had fallen after the pandemic began, and almost half reported that their ability to satisfy their food needs had worsened. Employing a household fixed effects difference-in-difference approach, the study finds that household food insecurity increased by 11.7 percentage points and the size of the food gap by 0.47 months in the aftermath of the onset of the pandemic.
Adolescence in the time of COVID-19: evidence from Bangladesh

AUTHOR(S)
Sarah Baird; Jennifer Seager; Shwetlena Sabarwal (et al.)

Institution: The World Bank
Published: November 2020
This note examines the effects of COVID-19 and subsequent economic and educational disruptions on adolescent well-being in Bangladesh. The analysis is based on data from 2,095 in-school adolescents aged 10–18 collected pre-COVID-19 (February–March 2020) through a field survey for an ongoing impact evaluation, and a follow-up virtual survey undertaken early in the pandemic (May-June 2020). Findings show large household-level economic impacts associated with increased food insecurity, anxiety, and mental health issues among adolescents. In addition, school closures have decreased adolescents’ access to learning, increased time spent on household chores, and affected future job aspirations. The impacts are particularly large for girls and for adolescents from more vulnerable households. Policy makers need to consider policies that facilitate school return, targeting girls and the most vulnerable. They also need creative school-based programming to address the likely long-run physical and mental health effects of COVID-19 on young people.
Socioeconomic impacts of COVID-19 in four African countries

AUTHOR(S)
Anna Josephson; Talip Kilic; Jeffrey D. Michler

Institution: The World Bank
Published: November 2020
This paper provides some of the first evidence on the socioeconomic impacts of and responses to the pandemic among households in Sub-Saharan Africa. Econometric methods are applied to longitudinal household survey data from Ethiopia, Malawi, Nigeria, and Uganda. Results show that 256 million individuals are estimated to live in households that have lost income due to the pandemic. Attempts to cope with this loss are exacerbated by the inability to access medicine and staple foods among 20 to 25 percent of the households in each country, and food insecurity is disproportionately borne by households that were already impoverished prior to the pandemic. Finally, student-teacher contact has dropped from a pre-COVID-19 rate of 96 percent to just 17 percent among households with school-age children. These findings can help inform decisions by governments and international organizations on measures to mitigate the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and reveal the need for continued monitoring.
Supporting women throughout the Coronavirus (COVID-19) emergency response and economic recovery
Institution: The World Bank
Published: October 2020
In addition to its immediate adverse impact on women’s and girls’ health and education, the COVID-19 pandemic has the potential to further exacerbate existing gender inequalities in economic opportunities across Sub-Saharan Africa. This brief highlight evidence from the Africa Gender Innovation Lab and other promising research on mechanisms that can help protect the lives and livelihoods of women and girls - at the household level, in firms and farms, and during adolescence - in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic. While these interventions focus on improving economic and social outcomes for women, many of them also have positive impacts for men. 
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What have we learnt? Findings from a survey of ministries of education on national responses to COVID-19
Institution: UNESCO, *UNICEF, The World Bank
Published: October 2020 UNICEF Publication
According to this new report published by UNESCO, UNICEF and the World Bank, schoolchildren in low- and lower-middle-income countries have already lost nearly four months of schooling since the start of the pandemic, compared to an average of six weeks among high-income countries. Compiling data from surveys on national education responses to COVID-19 from 149 countries between July and October, the report also finds that schoolchildren in low- and lower-middle income countries were less likely to have access to remote learning or to be monitored on a day-to-day basis by teachers and were more likely to have delays in their schools reopening.
Cite this research | Open access | No. of pages: 51 | Language: English | Topics: Education | Tags: education, government policy, COVID-19 response | Publisher: UNESCO, *UNICEF, The World Bank
COVID-19 impact monitoring: Nigeria, Round 3
Institution: The World Bank
Published: July 2020
The COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic and its economic and social effects on households have created an urgent need for timely data to help monitor and mitigate the social and economic impacts of the crisis and protect the welfare of Nigerian society. To monitor how the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic is affecting the economy and people of Nigeria and to inform policy interventions and responses, the National Bureau of Statistics with technical support from the World Bank implemented the Nigeria COVID-19 National Longitudinal Phone Survey (COVID-19 NLPS). This brief presents findings from the third round of this survey which was conducted between July 6 and 20, 2020.
The COVID-19 pandemic: shocks to education and policy responses
Institution: The World Bank
Published: July 2020
Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, the world was living a learning crisis. The COVID-19 pandemic now threatens to make education outcomes even worse. The pandemic has already had profound impacts on education by closing schools almost everywhere in the planet, in the largest simultaneous shock to all education systems in our lifetimes. The damage will become even more severe as the health emergency translates into a deep global recession.
Simulating the potential impacts of COVID-19 school closures on schooling and learning outcomes: a set of global estimates

AUTHOR(S)
João Pedro Azevedo; Amer Hasan; Diana Goldemberg (et al.)

Institution: The World Bank
Published: June 2020
School closures due to COVID-19 have left more than a billion students out of school. This paper presents the results of simulations considering three, five and seven months of school closure and different levels of mitigation effectiveness resulting in optimistic, intermediate and pessimistic global scenarios. Globally, a school shutdown of 5 months could generate learning losses that have a present value of $10 trillion. By this measure, the world could stand to lose as much as 16 percent of the investments that governments make in the basic education of this cohort of students. The world could thus face a substantial setback in achieving the goal of halving the percentage of learning poor and be unable to meet the goal by 2030 unless drastic remedial action is taken.
Children wait for a teacher in a classroom at Treichville Regional School, in the city of Abidjan. Although the school reopened after being closed for many years due to armed conflict, most teachers remain absent. (2011)
Framework for reopening schools
Global school closures in response to the COVID-19 pandemic present an unprecedented risk to children’s education, protection and well-being. Schools do much more than teach children how to read, write and count. They also provide nutrition, health and hygiene services; mental health and psychosocial support; and dramatically reduce the risk of violence, early pregnancy and more. And it’s the most vulnerable children who are the hardest hit by school closures, and we know from previous crises that the longer they are out of school, the less likely they are to return.When deciding whether to reopen schools, authorities should look at the benefits and risks across education, public health and socio-economic factors, in the local context, using the best available evidence. This policy brief aims to inform the decision-making process regarding school reopening, support national preparations and guide the implementation process, as part of overall public health and education planning processes. The guidelines outline six key priorities to assess the readiness of those schools and inform planning.
Lost wages: the COVID-19 cost of school closures

AUTHOR(S)
George Psacharopoulos; Victoria Collis; Harry Anthony Patrinos (et al.)

Published: May 2020
Social distancing requirements associated with COVID-19 have led to school closures. In April, 192 countries had closed all schools and universities, affecting more than 90 percent of the world's learners: over 1.5 billion children and young people. Closures are expected to reduce schooling and lead to future losses in earnings. Starting from the assumption that every additional year of schooling translates to 8 percent in future earnings, this paper estimates and confirms the loss in marginal future earnings on the basis of a four-month shutdown. This paper also estimated the losses by level of education. The findings show that the school closures reduce future earnings. It is also likely that students from low-income countries will be affected most, where the earning losses will be devastating. These estimates are conservative, assuming closures end after four months, with schools re-opening in the new academic year, and that school quality will not suffer.
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UNICEF Innocenti's Children and COVID-19 Library is a database collecting research from around the world on COVID-19 and its impacts on children and adolescents.

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COVID-19 & Children: Rapid Research Response

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.