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Children and COVID-19 Research Library

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

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Risk factors for death among children and young people hospitalized with COVID-19: a literature review

Bi Ze; Bin Chen; Xiaoshan Ji (et al.)

Published: December 2022   Journal: Pediatric Medicine

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has been a most important global issue since December 2019. Although for children, the clinical course of COVID-19 is milder, it may still cause a multi-system inflammatory syndrome and has rendered 22,000 deaths among children and young people. The objective of this review is to provide an up-to-date information about COVID-19 related mortality and relevant risk factors in children and young people. This study provides a narrative review of COVID-19 related mortality and relevant risk factors in children and young people. Electronic searches for studies were conducted using PubMed and Web of Science, with a date time up to April 22, 2022. 22, 2022. Only publications in English were included.

Parental and other caregiver loss due to COVID-19 in the United States: prevalence by race, state, relationship, and child age

Dan Treglia; J. J. Cutuli; Kamyar Arasteh (et al.)

Published: December 2022   Journal: Journal of Community Health
The more than one million COVID-19 deaths in the United States include parents, grandparents, and other caregivers for children. These losses can disrupt the social, emotional, and economic well-being of children, their families, and their communities, and understanding the number and characteristics of affected children is a critical step in responding. We estimate the number of children who lost a parent or other co-residing caregiver to COVID-19 in the U.S. and identify racial, ethnic, and geographic disparities by aligning COVID-19 death counts through mid-May 2022 with household information from a representative sample of individuals. We estimate that 216,617 children lost a co-residing caregiver to COVID-19; 77,283 lost a parent and more than 17,000 children lost the only caregiver with whom they lived. Non-White children were more than twice as likely as White children to experience caregiver loss, and children under 14 years old experienced 70% of caregiver loss.
Stress, depression and/or anxiety according to the death by COVID-19 of a family member or friend in health sciences students in Latin America during the first wave

Christian R. Mejia; Aldo Alvarez-Risco; Yaniré M. Mejía (et al.)

Published: November 2022   Journal: Sustainability
The COVID-19 pandemic generated high mortality in various countries, which may have had an impact on the mental health of young people. The objective of the study was to evaluate whether the death of a family member or close friend due to COVID-19 generated a higher prevalence of depression, anxiety, or moderate/severe stress in university health sciences students in Latin America. This is an analytical cross-sectional study, with secondary data; depression, anxiety, and stress were measured with a validated survey. In addition, data were obtained on the deaths by COVID-19 of family members or close friends, illness and other socio-economic variables. Descriptive and analytical statistics were obtained.
Children's experiences of death anxiety and responses to the Covid-19 pandemic

K. Jones; Ben Hughes

Published: June 2022   Journal: Illness, Crisis & Loss
The aim of this study was to explore children's experience and responses to the Covid-19 pandemic through their illustrations and short narrations. During October 2020 and January 2021 data was collected from thirteen children aged 9–10 years old in a primary school in the North-West of England. Children were asked to draw their thoughts and feelings about the pandemic and to write a short narration to accompany the drawing. Thematic analysis of data revealed that during the pandemic children at this age have an understanding of death, experience death anxiety and are able to use creative expression to facilitate meaning of the impact of lockdown on their lives such as feeling isolated, lonely, sad and bored. Creative expression also facilitated adaptive coping mechanisms derived from being able to spend more time with family. The data on primary school children is part of a larger study which involved surveys and interviews with children aged 12–16 years in secondary schools.
The impact of death and dying education for undergraduate students during the COVID-19 pandemic

Robert S. Weisskirch; Kimberly A. Crossman

Published: April 2022   Journal: OMEGA - Journal of Death and Dying
Fear of COVID-19 may make the imminence of death prescient for undergraduate students, increasing death anxiety and worsening mental health. Formal death education may provide benefits such as reduced fear of COVID-19 and death anxiety, and improved mental health. In this study, 86 undergraduate students completed a pre- and post-semester online questionnaire on fear of COVID-19, death anxiety, and mental health outcomes. Findings indicate indirect effects of death anxiety on fear of COVID-19 to anxiety. Moreover, fear of COVID-19, individual concerns about death, and death anxiety were reduced over the semester for undergraduate students in formal death education.
Beyond a traumatic loss: the experiences of mourning alone after parental death during COVID-19 pandemic

Zahra Asgari; Azam Naghavi; Mohammad Reza Abedi

Published: May 2021   Journal: Death Studies
Millions of adolescents around the world lost their loved ones due to the COVID-19 pandemic; at the same time, health protocols in many countries do not allow mourners to practice their familiar rituals around death and dying. This study explored the experience of 15 Iranian adolescents who had lost their parent(s) during the pandemic through a phenomenological approach. Two main themes including distress in a shattered life and crisis in crisis were extracted from the interviews. Findings highlight the importance of immediate and alternative ways of support for adolescents who lost their parents during the pandemic.
Children, dying parents and COVID-19

Steve Marshall; Andrew Rowland; Susan Higgins (et al.)

Published: September 2020   Journal: British Journal of Child Health
This paper evaluates the impact that COVID-19 pandemic had on children’s involvement when a parent is dying in the UK. Culturally competent, evidence-based services should be urgently commissioned to meet the holistic needs of children when a parent is dying with COVID-19 to reduce the risks of long-term harm.
Cite this research | Open access | Vol.: 1 | Issue: 4 | No. of pages: 1 | Language: English | Topics: Mental Health | Tags: child mental health, child psychology, death | Countries: United Kingdom
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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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Each quarterly thematic digest features the latest evidence drawn from the Children and COVID-19 Research Library on a particular topic of interest.
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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.