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Children and COVID-19 Research Library

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

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Changes in utilization and access to care for children and youth with special health care needs during the COVID-19 pandemic

Kristin Hittle Gigli; Genevieve Graaf

Published: September 2022   Journal: Journal of Pediatric Health Care
Children and youth with special health care needs (CYSHCN) are vulnerable to health care disruption, and policies were adopted to mitigate COVID-19-related disruptions. This study compared CYSHCN use of and access to care in 2019 to 2020. Using the National Survey of Children's Health, it identified CYSHCN and assessed differences in health care use, unmet health care needs, frustrations accessing care, and barriers to care using multivariable logistic regression analysis.
The refinement of home exercise program for children and adolescents with muscular dystrophy in the present COVID-19 pandemic scenario: a scoping review

Pallavi Harjpal; Rakesh K. Kovela; Anushka Raipure (et al.)

Published: September 2022   Journal: Cureus
Muscular dystrophies (MDs) are a category of hereditary illnesses characterized by the gradual malfunction and/or weakening of the skeletal muscles. This disease of the muscles also results in hypotonia and joint contracture, along with raised serum creatine kinase (CK) levels. To prevent complications, continuous physiotherapy is advised for children with muscular dystrophy, which is even asked to perform at home as a home exercise program (HEP). As a result, the home exercise program (HEP) is critical in maintaining the optimal health of children with Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). The present coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has adversely affected these children as there was very little scope to get direct help from a physiotherapist. Meanwhile, the home program was continued by many to compensate for the direct benefit. However, because of the lack of specific guidelines and structured methodology to follow for a home program, there was a deterioration in the health status of many children. There is a need to understand how the children are getting affected and the way the home program can be refined to help needy children with muscular dystrophy. Our scoping review aims to identify the present home program patterns being followed for children with DMD and their scope for refinement. The data were collected from electronic databases including PubMed, ProQuest, Cochrane, and Web of Science.
Childcare providers and COVID-19: the role of regulatory emotional self-efficacy in sustaining subjective well-being

Giovanni Maria Vecchio; Federica Zava; Maria Gerbino (et al.)

Published: September 2022   Journal: Early Education and Development
During the COVID-19 pandemic, the education system faced unprecedented challenges, including global school closures, the cancellation of face-to-face teaching, and ultimately school step-wise or partial reopening. Childcare providers have faced additional significant stressors from the beginning of the outbreak. The present study aimed at investigating the effect of childcare providers’ regulatory emotional self-efficacy on their subjective well-being (i.e. positive and negative affect), including indirectly through a reduction in stress during the first COVID-19 lockdown in Italy. Three hundred and sixty-four childcare providers at daycares and preschools in Italy participated in the study by completing an online survey. A structural equation model revealed an indirect effect between self-efficacy beliefs in the management of negative emotions and negative affect, via stress. More specifically, childcare providers with high self-efficacy beliefs in the management of negative emotions experienced less negative affect, alongside lower levels of stress.
Guidance for states on measuring equitable allocation of COVID relief funds and progress toward child care stabilization

Patti Banghart; Carlise King; Sarah Daily

Published: September 2022   Journal: Child Trends
The COVID-19 pandemic caused major hardships for child care providers and families with young children, leading an already fragile early care and education (ECE) system to the brink of collapse. Approximately two thirds of child care providers were closed in April 2020, and one third remained closed as of April 2021i due to financial instability from temporary closures and/or lower enrollment.ii This meant that the underpaid child care workforce—which disproportionately includes Black and Hispanic women, and other1 women of color and immigrant womeniii—was one of the hardest-hit industries during the pandemic. As of June 2022, child care employment nationwide remains down nearly 10 percent compared with February 2020.
"Will it work as well on Zoom?" A natural experiment during the Covid-19 pandemic of delivering parenting groups via video conferencing or in person

Livia van Leuven; Maria Lalouni; Martin Forster

Published: August 2022   Journal: Journal of Child and Family Studies
While rates of child maltreatment increased during the Covid-19-pandemic, face-to-face interventions to support families got difficult to carry out due to restrictions. Meanwhile, many services do not have access to parenting programs designed for digital or remote delivery. A solution employed by some services was to use video conferencing (VC) to deliver their regular parenting programs. This study examined the effectiveness of the universal group-based parenting program ABC offered through VC instead of on-site meetings during the pandemic. Pre and post measurements were collected from 469 parents participating in either 1) ABC with VC meetings only, 2) on-site meetings only, or 3) blended – a combination of VC and on-site sessions. In addition, 74 group leaders completed a survey about their experiences of VC groups.
The well-being of Rohingya children in Rohingya camps of Bangladesh during the Covid 19 pandemic: a qualitative exploration

Atiya Rahman; Nazrana Khaled; Mahmuda Akter (et al.)

Published: August 2022   Journal: Early Child Development and Care
Covid-19 infection is an additional burden to the life of the Rohingya children living in cramped camps of Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh. BRAC has introduced Humanitarian Play Lab (HPL) for children’s playful learning in the camps since 2017. During the Covid-19 pandemic, the modality was changed from face-face interactions to a telecommunication model. This qualitative research aims to understand caregivers’ and frontline providers' practices and perceptions about children’s well-being during the pandemic. Interviews were conducted with purposively selected parents and frontline providers through telephone. Interviews were transcribed and thematically analysed. The lockdown directly and indirectly affected children’s mental and physical well-being. A shared parenting role was observed in child education and learning. Parents widely accepted tele-communication services for children as it was considered important for continuing children’s wellbeing and learning. This research highlights the relevance and timeliness of utilising telecommunications services by parents for children's psychosocial health and playful learning.
Essential elements of a care delivery model for children with neurological impairments during the COVID-19 pandemic: notes from Bulgaria

Silviya Pavlova Nikolova; Ruzha Zlatanova Pancheva-Dimitrova; Nikoleta Yoncheva (et al.)

Published: August 2022   Journal: Frontiers in Public Health
Children with neurological impairments [NI] and their parents are dealing with extreme challenges resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic. Studies report high mental distress related to restrictions, self-isolation, and quarantines. In particular, schools and therapeutic centers' closures have placed an excessive burden on families with children with disabilities as home programs for schooling and rehabilitation have not always been accessible in different geographic settings. This has forced parents of children with disabilities to juggle multiple roles as teachers, therapists, and caregivers. Notably, in the health crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, it is crucial to adopt a model of care, strengthening the role of the family.
Teachers' perceived impact of COVID-19 on early child development in urban China: evidence from a national survey study

Chuchu Zheng; Yongping Yu; Yi Hou

Published: August 2022   Journal: Early Child Development and Care
This national survey study aimed to explore the teachers' perceived impact of COVID-19 on the development of preschoolers in urban China. 22,466 preschool teachers were randomly sampled from 11 provinces of urban China and surveyed online. First, descriptive statistics found that the teachers perceived the highest improvement in preschoolers' social skills and interpersonal relationships, whereas the least improvements in emotion and psychological health. Second, latent profile analysis generated three profiles: (1) Low Level; (2) Medium Level; and (3) High Level. Among the patterns of demographic factors, those in the profile with development stagnation or regression were most likely to be younger children in Western China public preschools.
Parents' perspectives of family engagement with early childhood education and care during the COVID-19 pandemic

Penny Levickis; Lisa Murray; Lynn Lee-Pang (et al.)

Published: August 2022   Journal: Early Childhood Education Journal
The COVID-19 pandemic has created significant challenges for Early Childhood Education and Care (ECEC) services and families, impacting family access to services and their communication and engagement with educators. This study aimed to examine parents’ perspectives of family engagement with ECEC services during the pandemic. Primary caregivers in Victoria at the time of recruitment (September–November 2020) were invited to participate. Of the 66 participants who completed an online survey, 25 also took part in semi-structured video call or phone interviews; qualitative findings from these interviews are reported in this paper. Four key themes were conceptualised using a reflexive thematic approach: (1) disruptions to ECEC access and attendance impacting on family routines and relationships, and child development; (2) barriers to family engagement; (3) ECEC educators’ support of families and children during the pandemic; and (4) increased parental appreciation of the ECEC profession.
Transformative lessons learned from COVID-19 to reimagine child welfare work

Amy S. He; Julie A. Cederbaum; Robin Leake

Published: July 2022   Journal: Journal of Public Child Welfare
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and because of the critical and essential nature of child welfare work, this workforce moved out of agency settings to remote work. Drawing from the theory of large systems change, this study explored child welfare caseworkers’ perspectives on how organizational changes due to the pandemic affected them as workers and their recommendations for sustained organizational change in child welfare. This narrative analysis explored secondary data collected in May 2020 about workforce needs related to the COVID-19 pandemic (N = 783). Regarding the impact of COVID-19, three themes emerged: (a) job impact (no change, limited change or positive outcome); (b) challenges (engaging with clients, conducting assessments, meeting with families, and using technology); and (c) impact on worker well-being (safety concerns, job stress, anxiety about the future). Three themes also emerged for recommendations for permanent workplace changes: (a) workplace flexibility (work from home, hybrid schedule); (b) better use of technology (virtual meetings and supporting remote access), and (c) worker well-being (support for worker safety and work–life balance and integration).
The emotional neglect potentials of nurses working in the COVID-19 service towards their children: a qualitative study

Vildan Apaydin Cirik; Elif Bulut; İlknur Kahriman (et al.)

Published: July 2022   Journal: Journal of Pediatric Nursing
This study aims to examine in depth the potential child emotional neglect behaviors of nurses working in the COVID-19 service, and their feelings, thoughts, and experiences regarding the causes and effects on their children. The study was designed as a qualitative study based on a descriptive phenomenological approach. A purposeful sample of service providers (N = 22) in the COVID-19 clinics of the region's largest hospital in northeast Turkey in terms of education and patient care were recruited for the study. The data were collected through semi-structured interviews using the individual in-depth face-to-face interview method. The interviews were audio-recorded, transcribed verbatim, and analyzed with Braun and Clarke's thematic analysis method. The research was reported by following Consolidated criteria for reporting qualitative research-COREQ.
Facing a care crunch: childcare disruption and economic hardships for Maine parents during COVID-19

Sarah F. Small

Published: July 2022   Journal: Maine Policy Review
Pandemic-related childcare center closures along with virtual schooling forced many Maine parents to juggle their paid work with care responsibilities, often with dire economic consequences. This article examines changes in the state’s childcare landscape and illustrate how the childcare crisis during the COVID-19 pandemic affected Mainers’ economic wellbeing. Using Household Pulse Survey data, it shows how care disruptions dampened Mainer’s incomes and their ability to work, placing many in precarious economic situations. It concludes with an investigation of the effectiveness of policy solutions like the Child Tax Credit and further policy suggestions to support childcare in the state.
Nowcasting impact of COVID-19 on multidimensional child poverty

Olivera Fiala; Aristide Kielem; Enrique Delamónica (et al.)

Published: July 2022   Journal: Statistical Journal of the IAOS
From the onset, it was clear that the impact of the global economic and social crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic was unlikely to affect all children equally. Thus, it was necessary to ascertain the impact of COVID-19 on child poverty as the events unfolded. Many of the indirect effects of the pandemic – disruptions to health services, delayed vaccination programmes, widespread school closures, and increases in food insecurity – have significant impacts on the realisation of children’s rights and, consequently, were expected to increase material deprivations across different dimensions. The question was by how much? In this article we explain the modelling and methodological approach to project or nowcast the answer to that question. The method is dynamic as it was revised as additional information emerged during 2020 and 2021.
The impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the market for childcare

Diana Weinert Thomas

Published: July 2022   Journal: Journal of Entrepreneurship and Public Policy

This paper assesses the short-term consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic on the market for childcare and speculates about potential long-term consequences of pandemic-related policy intervention. The paper uses basic statistics and data to describe changes in the market for childcare.

Parents under stress: Evaluating emergency childcare policies during the first COVID-19 lockdown in Germany

Simone Schüller; Hannah S. Steinberg

Published: July 2022   Journal: Labour Economics
What are the effects of school and daycare facility closures during the COVID-19 pandemic on parental well-being and parenting behavior? Can emergency childcare policies during a pandemic mitigate increases in parental stress and negative parenting behavior? To answer these questions, this study leverages cross-state variation in emergency childcare eligibility rules during the first COVID-19 lockdown in Germany and draws on unique data from the 2019 and 2020 waves of the German AID:A family panel.
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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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