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Children and COVID-19 Research Library

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

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US shelter in place policies and child abuse Google search volume during the COVID-19 pandemic

AUTHOR(S)
Corinne A. Riddell; Kriszta Farkas; Krista Neumann (et al.)

Published: September 2022   Journal: Preventive Medicine

The COVID-19 pandemic has led to unemployment, school closures, movement restrictions, and social isolation, all of which are child abuse risk factors. This study aimed to estimate the effect of COVID-19 shelter in place (SIP) policies on child abuse as captured by Google searches. It applied a differences-in-differences design to estimate the effect of SIP on child abuse search volume. It linked state-level SIP policies to outcome data from the Google Health Trends Application Programming Interface.


Psychosocial impact of lockdown on children due to COVID-19: a cross-sectional study

AUTHOR(S)
Mahdi Alnamnakani; Shuliweeh Alenezi; Hani Temsah (et al.)

Published: August 2022   Journal: Clinical Practice & Epidemiology in Mental Health

Quarantine measures during the COVID-19 lockdown had a negative impact on children’s psychology and development. This study aimed to evaluate the psychological impact of quarantine on children due to the COVID-19 pandemic in Saudi Arabia and to assess types of reported child maltreatment before and after the pandemic. A cross-sectional survey among parents was performed along with a retrospective data review for anonymized data from the National Family Safety Program, Saudi Arabia. 436 children participated in this survey during June-November 2020.

Relationship among child maltreatment, parental conflict, and mental health of children during the COVID-19 lockdown in China

AUTHOR(S)
Yashuang Bai; Mingqi Fu; Xiaohua Wang (et al.)

Published: August 2022   Journal: Journal of Child & Adolescent Trauma
Children are more likely to experience maltreatment and parental conflict in a pandemic context, which can exacerbate their vulnerability to psychological disorders. The purpose of the present study was to examine mental health symptoms in children aged 0 to 10 years and consider related factors from the perspectives of maltreatment and parental conflict during the COVID-19 lockdown. Participants were 1286 parents aged 18 years and over with children aged 0 to 10 years were included. Several multivariable linear regressions were used to analyze the data.
Ending violence against children during Covid-19 and beyond: second regional conference to strengthen implementation of the INSPIRE strategies
Institution: World Health Organisation, *UNICEF
Published: August 2022

UNICEF and WHO jointly organized Ending Violence Against Children During COVID-19 and Beyond: Second Regional Conference to Strengthen Implementation of the INSPIRE Strategies, held virtually on 1–5 November 2021. The Conference comes under the umbrella of the 2021 Solutions Summit series of the Global Partnership to End Violence Against Children (GPEVAC).  Over 1700 delegates gathered for the Conference virtually, representing governments (including from the health, social welfare, education and justice sectors), youth groups, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), the United Nations, nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), international NGOs, faith-based organizations and religious leaders, academic institutions, private sector and development partners, as well as the Special Representative of the Secretary-General on Violence Against Children. The purpose of the Conference was to identify actions needed to ensure effective prevention and response to VAC during the COVID-19 pandemic and recovery, utilizing the strategies outlined in INSPIRE: Seven strategies for ending violence against children.

Injuries and child abuse increase during the pandemic over 12942 emergency admissions

AUTHOR(S)
Quentin Hennocq; Célia Adjed; Hélène Chappuy (et al.)

Published: August 2022   Journal: Injury
A strict lockdown was decided from 17/03/2020 to 11/05/2020 in France in order to tackle the first wave of the COVID19 pandemic. In the Great Paris region, several areas are severely affected by overcrowding, creating difficult conditions for children and their families during a period of nearly two months. The objective was to assess the effects of the 2020 spring lockdown on injuries, child abuse and neglect. The central medical data warehouse was screened for all pediatric admissions at emergency and critical care departments of 20 hospitals, in a cohort of 12942 children. Specific keywords were used to screen for both injuries and child abuse and neglect.
Prevalence, increase and predictors of family violence during the COVID-19 pandemic, using modern machine learning approaches

AUTHOR(S)
Kristina Todorovic; Erin O’Leary; Kaitlin P. Ward (et al.)

Published: August 2022   Journal: Frontiers in Psychiatry

We are facing an ongoing pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), which is causing detrimental effects on mental health, including disturbing consequences on child maltreatment and intimate partner violence. This study sought to identify predictors of child maltreatment and intimate partner violence from 380 participants (mean age 36.67 ± 10.61, 63.2% male; Time 3: June 2020) using modern machine learning analysis (random forest and SHAP values). It predicted that COVID-related factors (such as days in lockdown), parents’ psychological distress during the pandemic (anxiety, depression), their personality traits, and their intimate partner relationship will be key contributors to child maltreatment. It also examined if there is an increase in family violence during the pandemic by using an additional cohort at two time points (Time 1: March 2020, N = 434; mean age 35.67 ± 9.85, 41.69% male; and Time 2: April 2020, N = 515; mean age 35.3 ± 9.5, 34.33%).

Changes in child discipline strategies in Iran during the outbreak of COVID-19

AUTHOR(S)
Samin Farahzadi; Masoomeh Maarefvand; Maryam Zabihi Poursaadati

Published: July 2022   Journal: The Journal of School Nursing
During the prolonged COVID-19 pandemic, anxiety and depression were common among caregivers and parents more prone to adopt harsh disciplinary techniques when angry or stressed. The purpose of this study was to investigate if there are any differences in parents’ disciplinary strategies following social distancing efforts during the COVID-19 pandemic. An online questionnaire was completed by a convenience sample of parents (N = 605) and mothers (n = 533; 88.1%) aged 37.80 years old (SD = 5.66; range = 20–59) who lived with children aged 6–12 years in Iran during the COVID-19 pandemic. Iran's Multiple Indicator Demographic and Health Survey questionnaire was used to gauge child discipline.
An analytical study on the violence against children during Covid-19 period in Bangladesh

AUTHOR(S)
Abu Shahen

Published: July 2022   Journal: International Journal of Qualitative Research

This paper tried to know the different forms of violence against children during the Corona pandemic in  Bangladesh  from 2020 to  mid-2021.  As  we have  already experienced  this  catastrophic and lives  losing  pandemic situation across the world wherein  the  people  of  Bangladesh  have  been  uniquely facing this  live  losing situation  since 2020.  World  Health  Organization  has  warned  people  to  adopt different  precautionary  measures  like  20-second hand washing, wearing  a  mask, maintaining  physical  and  social  distance,  isolation,  quarantine,  taking immediate treatment,  and  vaccination.  The real situation is that  many  countries  have  failed  to take  these measures and lost a huge  number  of  lives. In  spite  of  those  situations, many  developed  countries  have taken  precautionary  measures  to  prevent  mass transmission of the   Covid-19 virus.  But unfortunately,  many socio-economic problems  like  violence  against  children  and women have been  aroused during this pandemic situation while governments have given more concentration on Covid-19 prevention, e.g., isolation, quarantine, awareness of social   measures, and vaccination.


Violence against children in family settings during the COVID-19 outbreak in Croatia

AUTHOR(S)
Dalida Rittossa

Published: July 2022   Journal: Zbornik Pravnog fakulteta Sveučilišta u Rijeci
In recent times, humanity has experienced the devastating effects of the COVID-19 crisis, which has caused sharp ruptures in different spheres of social life. Detrimental effects of the almost unprecedented crisis have triggered an avalanche of research to explore the phenomenon in focus while conducting scientific investigation that matters. Despite the rapid influx of scholarly articles, recent literature has shown that there is still a remarkable lack of scholarly attention on disasters and their impact on children. While trying to contribute to and address the noted research gap, to the best of the author’s knowledge, this is the first study that explores pathways to violence against children in the time of the COVID-19 pandemic in Croatia with a focus on the national lockdown. The sample consisted of 63 randomly selected police files involving 65 suspects of criminal offences with elements of violence against 108 closely related children at the five police departments centred in Pula, Rijeka, Zagreb, Split and Osijek. In order to “capture” the violence that emerged during the lockdown and was reported after restrictive measures were lifted, a seven-month time frame (March–September, 2020) was implemented as an additional sampling parameter.
Associations between caregiver stress and child verbal abuse and corporal punishment in Thailand's impoverished Deep South region during the COVID-19 pandemic

AUTHOR(S)
Rohani Jeharsae; Manusmeen Jehnok; Haneefah Jeh-alee (et al.)

Published: July 2022   Journal: International Journal of Mental Health
The objectives of this study are: (1) To describe the levels of parental stress, self-reported child verbal abuse and corporal punishment among caregivers, and; (2) To assess the extent that having moderate or higher levels of parental stress is associated with self-reported child verbal abuse and corporal punishment. We randomly sampled 12 villages and sampled 40 households per village in Thailand’s impoverished Deep South region in June 2020. Study participants included 466 caregivers residing in sampled households. Trained enumerators used the standard ST-5 questionnaire to measure stress level and asked the participants to self-report the study outcomes.
Impact on the incidence of suspected physical abuse in children under 24 months of age during a global pandemic: a multi-centre irish regional retrospective cross-sectional analysis

AUTHOR(S)
Caoimhe McDonnell; Michael Courtney; Michael Barrett (et al.)

Published: July 2022   Journal: The British Journal of Radiology

he advent of the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in periods of nationwide restrictions in Ireland including school and workplace closures. The authors hypothesised that this disruption to society may have led to a change in patterns of suspected physical abuse (SPA) presentations to the paediatric emergency department (ED), whilst ED attendance fell dramatically during the period. We reviewed data to determine whether there was an increase in presentations of SPA during periods of social restrictions. The National Integrated Medical Imaging Service was searched for all skeletal survey examinations performed between the dates of the 1 March 2016 and 28 Feb 2021 for studies performed in cases of SPA. Electronic records of attendance were extracted from the emergency department administrative system at the three paediatric emergency departments which serve the 400,000 children regionally. The data were reviewed to determine if SPA presentations increased during restriction periods.

Intimate partner violence against pregnant women during the COVID-19 pandemic: a systematic review and meta-analysis

AUTHOR(S)
Huldani Huldani; Walid Kamal Abdelbasset; Saade Abdalkareem Jasim (et al.)

Published: July 2022   Journal: Women & Health
This systematic review and meta-analysis aimed to estimate the pooled prevalence of (intimate partner violence) IPV against pregnant women in the COVID-19 pandemic. A literature search was conducted in PubMed, Web of Science, and Scopus for observational studies regarding the prevalence of IPV against pregnant women during the COVID-19 pandemic. The search was performed with the following keywords: intimate partner violence, domestic violence, battered women, wife assault, partner assault, wife abuse, partner abuse, femicide, domestic homicide, pregnancy, gestation, pregnant women, COVID-19, SARS-CoV-2, 2019-nCoV, Coronavirus Disease-19, 2019 Novel Coronavirus, Wuhan Coronavirus, SARS Coronavirus 2, Wuhan Seafood Market Pneumonia Virus. Heterogeneity between the studies was assessed using Cochran’s Q test and I2 index. In addition, a random-effects model was used to estimate the prevalence of IPV. Data analysis was performed in Stata software version 16.
The utility of administrative data in understanding the COVID-19 pandemic's impact on child maltreatment: learning from the Scotland experience

AUTHOR(S)
Alexander McTier; Joanna Soraghan

Published: June 2022   Journal: Child Maltreatment
The COVID-19 pandemic and associated public health ‘stay at home’ restrictions have intensified familial risk factors. Children would appear to be at increased risk of harm and abuse, yet administrative data from the early months of the pandemic showed falling cases of child maltreatment. Using weekly administrative data from Scotland, UK that span the first 17 months of the pandemic, this article found that child maltreatment activity levels fluctuated as ‘stay at home’ restrictions changed. During lockdown periods, the number of children subject to Inter-agency Referral Discussion fell but a higher number of children were placed on the Child Protection Register. When restrictions were eased, the number of Inter-agency Referral Discussions increased but the number of children placed on the Child Protection Register fell. To explain the fluctuations, the article asserts that the pandemic’s impact on services’ ability to engage directly with children and families has been critical, but the limitations of administrative data in providing an accurate measure of child maltreatment levels also need to be recognised.
Children exposed to intimate partner violence during confinement: characteristics by age and sex

AUTHOR(S)
Mavi Alcántara-López; Maravillas Castro; Antonia Martínez-Pérez (et al.)

Published: June 2022   Journal: Frontiers in Psychology
The COVID-19 pandemic and restrictions imposed to stop its advance have affected the entire population. Children living with difficulties or in vulnerable situations prior to the pandemic might have suffered an even greater impact. This present study examines the psychological impact of quarantine on children and adolescents exposed to intimate partner violence against their mothers. Participants were 185 mothers who reported 269 children, as well as 108 children who self-reported. An emotional and behavioral checklist was administered to both mothers and children throughout confinement.
The relationship between family variables and family social problems during the COVID-19 pandemic

AUTHOR(S)
Saeko Kamoshida; Naoto Nihonmatsu; Gen Takagi (et al.)

Published: June 2022   Journal: Plos One
This study examined the relationship between variables about family members co-residing during the COVID-19 pandemic and anxiety about COVID-19, domestic violence from spouse, child abuse anxiety, internet addiction, and mental health as social problems related to the COVID-19 pandemic. A total of 220 parents (70 male and 150 female, age; M = 41.6, SD = 34.4) were included in the analysis. Stepwise hierarchical multiple regression analysis was conducted with dependent variables of fear of COVID-19, spousal violence, anxiety regarding perpetrating child abuse, internet addiction, and mental health. The independent variables were basic variables related to family members such as family composition.
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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.