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Children and COVID-19 Research Library

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

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1 - 15 of 48
Adolescent consent to COVID-19 vaccination: the need for law reform

AUTHOR(S)
Robert S. Olick; Y. Tony Yang; Jana Shaw (et al.)

Published: September 2021   Journal: Public Health Reports
With the US Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA’s) emergency use authorization of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for adolescents aged 12-15 years on May 10, 2021, COVID-19 vaccination is now available to all adolescents aged 12-17 years. Moderna has also applied for emergency use authorization approval for this age group.1 The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention strongly recommends vaccination of the adolescent population, which comprises approximately 25 million people in the United States. Comprehensive protection is critical to adolescent and population health and is a big step toward a return to “normal life” for young people, including in-person school. Vaccine hesitancy—the reluctance or refusal to choose vaccination—identified by the World Health Organization as a top 10 global health threat, undermines these goals. According to a June 2021 Kaiser Family Foundation COVID-19 poll, 42% of parents with adolescents aged 12-17 years said they had either already vaccinated their children or planned to vaccinate their children, 18% said they would “wait a while to see how it is working,” 25% were definitely opposed, and 10% would choose vaccination only if required for school.
Caregivers’ sources of information about immunization as predictors of delayed childhood vaccinations in Saudi Arabia during the COVID-19 pandemic: a cross-sectional questionnaire study

AUTHOR(S)
Leena R. Baghdadi; Marwah M. Hassounah; Afnan Younis (et al.)

Published: August 2021   Journal: Risk Management and Healthcare Policy
Of 628 women, 11.8% (n = 74) were pregnant at the time of survey. Most of the pregnant women (89.2%, n = 66) had some degree of concerns about their unborn babies getting infected during delivery in the hospital. Among mothers of children under 10 years of age (n = 564), half (n = 282) reported change in their children’s behavior during the lockdown. Most mothers and pregnant women (94.9%, n = 569) had some degree of psychological distress. Mothers and pregnant women with a college degree had significantly lower psychological distress (β = -1.346; p = 0.014) than women with a high school education or less. Similarly, mothers and pregnant women with monthly family income ≥ US$ 1,333 had lower psychological distress than those with < US$ 1,333. Women with pre-existing chronic physical (β = 2.424; p < 0.001) or mental (β = 4.733; p < 0.001) conditions had higher psychological distress than those without these conditions. Having children in the house was a contributory factor for higher psychological distress. For example, mothers with one child (β = 2.602; p = 0.007) had significantly higher psychological distress compared to expectant mothers without children in the house.
Willingness and influential factors of parents of 3-6-year-old children to vaccinate their children with the COVID-19 vaccine in China

AUTHOR(S)
Xiao Wan; Haitao Huang; Jia Shang (et al.)

Published: August 2021   Journal: Human Vaccines & Immunotherapeutics
The impact of Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) on children aged 3–6 can be severe. Vaccination for COVID-19 is one of the most important primary preventative measures to reduce disease transmission. Parents are hesitant to vaccinate their children against COVID-19 because it was reported in the news that some adults have had adverse reactions to the vaccine. This study aims to investigate the willingness of Chinese parents of 3–6 year old children to vaccinate them with the COVID-19 vaccine and identify what factors influence their decisions. A survey was conducted using a two-stage stratified random sampling method from December 2020 to February 2021. We used univariate analysis and multivariate binary logistic analysis to explore potential factors that may determine the acceptance of the COVID-19 vaccine.
Repurposing of the childhood vaccines: could we train the immune system against the SARS-CoV-2

AUTHOR(S)
Divakar Sharma

Published: August 2021   Journal: Expert Review of Vaccines

The COVID-19 pandemic is a globalized health concern caused by a beta-coronavirus named Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2). Since December 2019, when this outbreak flared in Wuhan, China, COVID-19 cases have been continuously rising all over the world. Due to the emergence of SARS-CoV-2 mutants, subsequent waves are flowing in a faster manner as compared to the primary wave, which is more contagious and causing higher mortality. Recently, India has emerged as the new epicenter of the second wave by mutants of SARS-CoV-2. After almost eighteen months of this outbreak, some COVID-19 dedicated therapeutics and vaccines are available, and a few are under trial, but the situation is still uncontrolled. This perspective article covers the repurposing of childhood vaccines like Bacille Calmette–Guerin (BCG), Measles, Mumps, Rubella (MMR), and Oral Polio Vaccine (OPV), which are live attenuated vaccines and have been shown the protective effect through ‘trained immunity and ‘crossreactivity.'

Pediatric and parents' attitudes towards COVID-19 vaccines and intention to vaccinate for children

AUTHOR(S)
Soo-Han Choi; Yoon Hee Jo; Kyo Jin Jo (et al.)

Published: August 2021   Journal: Journal of Korean Medical Science

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccination is necessary to reach herd immunity and essential for mitigating the spread of the pandemic. In May 2021, the US FDA and the EU have expanded the emergency use authorization for a COVID-19 vaccine to children aged 12 to 15. The aim of this study was to investigate parental acceptability of COVID-19 vaccination for their children, factors affecting their acceptability, and children's perceptions of COVID-19 vaccines in Republic of Korea. A questionnaire survey at two tertiary hospitals was conducted from May 25, 2021 to June 3, 2021. Subjects were parents having children under 18 years and children aged 10–18 years.

SARS-CoV-2 infection risk during delivery of childhood vaccination campaigns: a modelling study

AUTHOR(S)
Simon R. Procter; Kaja Abbas; Stefan Flasche (et al.)

Published: August 2021   Journal: BMC Medicine

The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted the delivery of immunisation services globally. Many countries have postponed vaccination campaigns out of concern about infection risks to the staff delivering vaccination, the children being vaccinated, and their families. The World Health Organization recommends considering both the benefit of preventive campaigns and the risk of SARS-CoV-2 transmission when making decisions about campaigns during COVID-19 outbreaks, but there has been little quantification of the risks. This study modelled excess SARS-CoV-2 infection risk to vaccinators, vaccinees, and their caregivers resulting from vaccination campaigns delivered during a COVID-19 epidemic. It used population age structure and contact patterns from three exemplar countries (Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, and Brazil). It combined an existing compartmental transmission model of an underlying COVID-19 epidemic with a Reed-Frost model of SARS-CoV-2 infection risk to vaccinators and vaccinees. It explored how excess risk depends on key parameters governing SARS-CoV-2 transmissibility, and aspects of campaign delivery such as campaign duration, number of vaccinations, and effectiveness of personal protective equipment (PPE) and symptomatic screening.

COVID-19 in Ghana: challenges and countermeasures for maternal health service delivery in public health facilities

AUTHOR(S)
Faith Agbozo; Albrecht Jahn

Published: July 2021   Journal: Reproductive Health
This study provides a situational update on COVID-19 in Ghana, the seventh African country reporting the most cases. Some modifications occurring within the health system to curtail the outbreak and its potential impact on the delivery of antenatal care services are also highlighted. With the discovery of the Delta variant in Ghana, the current attention is to prevent a third wave of infection, and also control and manage existing cases. Efforts to procure vaccines, vaccinate special populations and sensitize the public on the implications of vaccine hesitancy are ongoing.
Impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on routine childhood immunisation in Colombia

AUTHOR(S)
José Moreno-Montoya; Silvia Marcela Ballesteros; Jaid Constanza Rojas Sotelo (et al.)

Published: July 2021   Journal: Archives of Disease in Childhood

This article aims to assess the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on routine childhood vaccination coverage in Colombia by age group, rural/urban residence, state and vaccine type. It is an ecological study of official monthly vaccination records.

Parental plans to vaccinate children for COVID-19 in New York city

AUTHOR(S)
Chloe A. Teasdale; Luisa N. Borrell; Yanhan Shen (et al.)

Published: July 2021   Journal: Vaccine
Once COVID-19 vaccines are approved for children < 12 years of age, high pediatric vaccination coverage will be needed to help minimize the public health threat from the SARS-CoV-2 epidemic. We conducted an online survey of 1,119 parents and caregivers of children ≤ 12 years in New York City from March 9 to April 11, 2021. Among parents surveyed, 61.9% reported plans to vaccinate their youngest child for COVID-19, 14.8% said they do not plan to vaccinate their child and 23.3% were unsure. Female and non-Hispanic Black parents were least likely to report plans to vaccinate their children. Safety, effectiveness and perceptions that children do not need vaccination were the primary reasons for vaccine hesitancy/resistance. Parents who have or will vaccinate themselves were significantly more likely to report they would vaccinate their children.
Parental perspectives on immunizations: impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on childhood vaccine hesitancy

AUTHOR(S)
Kaidi He; Wendy J. Mack; Michael Neely (et al.)

Published: July 2021   Journal: Journal of Community Health
Childhood vaccine hesitancy has been studied extensively before the COVID-19 pandemic. The pandemic presented new barriers to pediatric vaccinations. Furthermore, the development of COVID-19 vaccines has complicated factors underlying vaccine hesitancy. This study performed a cross-sectional mobile phone-based survey at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles querying parents regarding perspectives on vaccines before and during the pandemic. Its primary aim was to understand the impact of the pandemic on routine childhood vaccine hesitancy. Secondarily, it examined intent to vaccinate, COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy, and key contributing demographic factors.
Humoral immunity to SARS-CoV-2 and seasonal coronaviruses in children and adults in north-eastern France

AUTHOR(S)
Tom Woudenberg; Stephane Pelleau; Francois Anna (et al.)

Published: July 2021   Journal: EBioMedicine Home
Children are underrepresented in the COVID-19 pandemic and often experience milder disease than adolescents and adults. Reduced severity is possibly due to recent and more frequent seasonal human coronaviruses (HCoV) infections. This study assessed the seroprevalence of SARS-CoV-2 and seasonal HCoV specific antibodies in a large cohort in north-eastern France. In this cross-sectional seroprevalence study, serum samples were collected from children and adults requiring hospital admission for non-COVID-19 between February and August 2020. Antibody responses to SARS-CoV-2 and seasonal HCoV (229E, HKU1, NL63, OC43) were assessed using a bead-based multiplex assay, Luciferase-Linked ImmunoSorbent Assay, and a pseudotype neutralisation assay.
COVID-19 vaccines for children in LMICs: another equity issue

AUTHOR(S)
Beate Kampmann; Uduak Okomo

Published: July 2021   Journal: The Lancet Journal

Given the success of COVID-19 vaccines in preventing death and severe disease in adults and their impact on community transmission,  use in children and young people (CYP) inevitably requires consideration. Although severe COVID-19 is rare in CYP, they are affected by SARS-CoV-2 infection and the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, including education, mental health, and general wellbeing. As of late July, 2021, no COVID-19 vaccine is recommended for children younger than 12 years and safety and efficacy data from phase 3 clinical trials are so far limited: 1131 CYP aged 12–15 years received the Pfizer–BioNTech mRNA vaccine and safety data are available from phase 1 and 2 trials of Sinovac's inactivated CoronaVac vaccine in 438 children aged 3–17 years. Safety data have been reassuring, with published data confirming excellent immunogenicity. There is no reason to believe the vaccines should not be equally protective against COVID-19 in CYP as they are in adults. More than 30 international trials are now recruiting CYP as young as 6 months to assess safety, immunogenicity, dosing, and scheduling questions.
Leukaemia and lockdown: The delayed infection model of childhood acute lymphoblastic leukaemia and the COVID-19 pandemic

AUTHOR(S)
Katy Lillie

Published: July 2021   Journal: Pediatric Blood & Cancer
Acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL) is the most common type of leukaemia diagnosed in children. The prevailing hypothesis regarding pathogenesis of childhood ALL was developed by Greaves, and states that ALL is caused by an abnormal immune response to a common infection. The response arises either due to naivety of the immune system caused by a lack of common childhood infections, or genetic susceptibility due to specific alleles. The former explanation is known as the delayed infection hypothesis. COVID-19 is a new infection that no children in the UK were exposed to prior to 2020. Furthermore, the lockdown measures designed to prevent spread of this virus have also greatly reduced spread of other common infections. It is therefore important to examine the evidence for this hypothesis, and to consider it in the context of the pandemic to determine what effect lockdown measures may have on incidence of ALL in children.
SARS-CoV-2 antibodies started to decline just four months after COVID-19 infection in a paediatric population

AUTHOR(S)
Adin Breuer; Allon Raphael; Hagay Stern (et al.)

Published: July 2021   Journal: Acta Paediatrica

This study evaluated the prevalence of paediatric severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infections using antibody testing and characterised antibody titres by time from exposure. This was a single-centre, prospective, cross-sectional cohort study. Patients under 18 years old were eligible to participate if they attended the paediatric emergency department at the tertiary Shaare Zedek Medical Center, Jerusalem, Israel, from 18 October 2020 to 12 January 2021 and required blood tests or intravenous access. SARS-CoV-2 seropositivity and antibody levels were tested by a dual-assay model.

Short-term outcome of pregnant women vaccinated by BNT162b2 mRNA COVID-19 vaccine

AUTHOR(S)
S. Bookstein Peretz; N. Regev; L. Novick (et al.)

Published: July 2021   Journal: Ultrasound in Obstetrics & Gynecology

This study aims to determine the immunogenicity and reactogenicity of Pfizer's BNT162b2 COVID-19 vaccine among pregnant women compared with non-pregnant women, and to evaluate the obstetric outcome following vaccination. An observational case-control study of pregnant women, who were vaccinated by a 2-dose regimen of BNT162b2 vaccine during gestation between January-February 2021 (study group) and were compared to age-matched non-pregnant women who received the vaccine during the same time period (control group).

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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.