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Children and COVID-19 Research Library

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

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31 - 45 of 120
National COVID-19 vaccine program progress and parents’ willingness to vaccinate their children

Ran D. Goldman; Jeffrey N. Bone; Renana Gelernterd (et al.)

Published: November 2021   Journal: Human Vaccines & Immunotherapeutics
Vaccinating children against COVID-19 is critical as a public health strategy in order to reach herd immunity and prevent illness among children and adults. The aim of the study was to identify correlation between willingness to vaccinate children under 12 years old, and vaccination rate for adult population in Canada, the United States, and Israel. This was a secondary analysis of a cross-sectional survey study (COVID-19 Parental Attitude Study) of parents of children 12 years and younger presenting to 12 pediatric emergency departments (EDs). Parental reports of willingness to vaccinate against COVID-19 when vaccines for children will be approved was correlated to country-specific rate of vaccination during December 2020–March 2021, obtained from Logistic regression models were fit with covariates for week and the corresponding vaccine rate. A total of 720 surveys were analyzed. In Canada, administering mostly first dose to the adult population, willingness to vaccinate children was trending downward (correlation = −0.28), in the United States, it was trending upwards (correlation = 0.21) and in Israel, initially significant increase with decline shortly thereafter (correlation = 0.06).
The mental well-being and coping strategies of Canadian adolescents during the COVID-19 pandemic: a qualitative, cross-sectional study

Kendra Nelson Ferguson; Stephanie E. Coen; Danielle Tobin (et al.)

Published: November 2021   Journal: Cmaj Open

Qualitative research is lacking on the mental well-being of adolescents during the COVID-19 pandemic. The aim of this study was to explore the feelings and emotions adolescents experienced during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic and the coping strategies they identified and employed to manage those emotions. Participants living in Canada aged 13–19 years were recruited through social media platforms and youth-serving organizations. Qualitative data were gathered from 2 open-ended questions included in a youth-informed cross-sectional online survey: “What feelings and emotions have you experienced around the pandemic?” and “What coping strategies have you used during the pandemic?” Data were collected from June 2020 to September 2020. A summative content analysis was undertaken to analyze survey responses inductively.

Impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on family mental health in Canada: findings from a multi-round cross-sectional study

Kimberly C. Thomson; Emily Jenkins; Randip Gill (et al.)

Published: November 2021   Journal: International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Pandemic-related disruptions, including school, child care, and workplace closures, financial stressors, and relationship challenges, present unique risks to families’ mental health. We examined the mental health impacts of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic among parents with children <18 years old living at home over three study rounds in May 2020 (n = 618), September 2020 (n = 804), and January 2021 (n = 602). Data were collected using a cross-sectional online survey of adults living in Canada, nationally representative by age, gender, household income, and region. Chi-square tests and logistic regression compared outcomes between parents and the rest of the sample, among parent subgroups, and over time. Parents reported worsened mental health compared with before the pandemic, as well as not coping well, increased alcohol use, increased suicidal thoughts/feelings, worsened mental health among their children, and increases in both negative and positive parent–child interactions. Mental health challenges were more frequently reported among parents with pre-existing mental health conditions, disabilities, and financial/relationship stressors. Increased alcohol use was more frequently reported among younger parents and men. Sustained mental health challenges of parents throughout nearly a year of the pandemic suggest that intervention efforts to support family mental health may not be adequately meeting families’ needs.
Following the epidemic waves: child and youth mental health assessments in Ontario through multiple pandemic waves

Shannon L. Stewart; Aadhiya S. Vasudeva; Jocelyn N. Van Dyke (et al.)

Published: November 2021   Journal: Frontiers in Psychiatry
Emerging studies across the globe are reporting the impact of COVID-19 and its related virus containment measures, such as school closures and social distancing, on the mental health presentations and service utilization of children and youth during the early stages of lockdowns in their respective countries. However, there remains a need for studies which examine the impact of COVID-19 on children and youth's mental health needs and service utilization across multiple waves of the pandemic. The present study used data from 35,162 interRAI Child and Youth Mental Health (ChYMH) assessments across 53 participating mental health agencies in Ontario, Canada, to assess the mental health presentations and referral trends of children and youth across the first two waves of the COVID-19 pandemic in the province.
Vulnerability pathways to mental health outcomes in children and parents during COVID-19

Jala Rizeq; Daphne J. Korczak; Katherine Tombeau Cost (et al.)

Published: November 2021   Journal: Current Psychology
This study examined pathways from pre-existing psychosocial and economic vulnerability to mental health difficulties and stress in families during the COVID-19 pandemic. Data from two time points from a multi-cohort study initiated during the COVID-19 pandemic were used. Parents of children 6–18 years completed questionnaires on pre-COVID-19 socioeconomic and demographic factors in addition to material deprivation and stress due to COVID-19 restrictions, mental health, and family functioning. Youth 10 years and older also completed their own measures of mental health and stress. Using structural equation modelling, pathways from pre-existing vulnerability to material deprivation and stress due to COVID-19 restrictions, mental health, and family functioning, including reciprocal pathways, were estimated. Pre-existing psychosocial and economic vulnerability predicted higher material deprivation due to COVID-19 restrictions which in turn was associated with parent and child stress due to restrictions and mental health difficulties. The reciprocal effects between increased child and parent stress and greater mental health difficulties at Time 1 and 2 were significant. Reciprocal effects between parent and child mental health were also significant. Finally, family functioning at Time 2 was negatively impacted by child and parent mental health and stress due to COVID-19 restrictions at Time 1.
Social inequalities in COVID-19 vaccine acceptance and uptake for children and adolescents in Montreal, Canada

Britt McKinnon; Caroline Quach; Ève Dubé (et al.)

Published: November 2021   Journal: Vaccine

The success of current and prospective COVID-19 vaccine campaigns for children and adolescents will in part depend on the willingness of parents to accept vaccination. This study examined social determinants of parental COVID-19 vaccine acceptance and uptake for children and adolescents. We used cross-sectional data from an ongoing COVID-19 cohort study in Montreal, Canada and included all parents of 2 to 18-year-olds who completed an online questionnaire between May 18 and June 26, 2021 (n = 809). We calculated child age-adjusted prevalence estimates of vaccine acceptance by parental education, race/ethnicity, birthplace, household income, and neighbourhood, and used multinomial logistic regression to estimate adjusted prevalence differences (aPD) and ratios (aPR). Social determinants of vaccine uptake were examined for the vaccine-eligible sample of 12 to 18 year-olds (n = 306).

Family relationship quality during the COVID-19 pandemic: the value of adolescent perceptions of change

Alexa Martin-Storey; Melanie Dirks; Brett Holfeld (et al.)

Published: November 2021   Journal: Journal of Adolescence

Adolescents typically spend decreasing amounts of time with family members, but the COVID-19 pandemic changed this pattern for many youth. The objective of the current study was to better understand adolescents' perceived change in family relationship quality, and how these perceptions were related to psychosocial functioning during the COVID-19 pandemic, accounting for more traditional measures of family relationship quality. Understanding how adolescents perceived change in relationship quality with family members during the pandemic offers novel insight into adolescents’ relationships with their families and psychosocial functioning during this period. A sample of Canadian adolescents (N = 605, ages 14 to 18, 53% girls), was employed to examine patterns of adolescents’ perceived change in relationship quality with parents and siblings since the start of the pandemic, accounting for relationship quality, pandemic-related characteristics, and demographic variables.

Substance-related coping behaviours among youth during the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic

Isabella Romano; Karen A. Patte; Margaret de Groh (et al.)

Published: November 2021   Journal: Addictive Behaviors Reports
As impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic continue to unfold, research is needed to understand how school-aged youth are coping with COVID-19-related changes and disruptions to daily life. Among a sample of Canadian youth, our objective was to examine the mental health factors associated with using substances to cope with COVID-19-related changes, taking account of expected sex differences.
From “nobody's clapping for us” to “bad moms”: COVID-19 and the circle of childcare in Canada

Julia Smith

Published: October 2021   Journal: Gender, Work & Organization
The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the importance of childcare to national economies in general and women's economic participation in particular, spurring renewed interest in childcare policy in many countries that have implemented lockdowns. This paper adopts a circle of care framework to analyzes how COVID-19 has affected paid childcare, unpaid childcare and other paid work, and the relationship between these sectors. Analysis is grounded in the lived experiences of parents and childcare educators, documented through 16 semi-structured interviews during the initial lockdown (March–June 2020) in British Columbia, Canada. Experiences from educators suggest their safety was not prioritized, and that their contributions were undervalued and went unrecognized. Mothers, who provided the majority of unpaid care, not only lost income due to care demands, but struggled to access necessities, with some reporting increased personal insecurity. Those attempting to work from home also experienced feelings of guilt and distress as they tried to manage the triple burden. Similarities of experiences across the circle of care suggest the COVID-19 childcare policy response in BC Canada downloaded care responsibilities on to women without corresponding recognition or support, causing women to absorb the costs of care work, with potential long-term negative effects on women's careers and well-being, as well as on the resilience of the circle of care.
Loneliness among adolescents and young adults with cancer during the COVID-19 pandemic: a cross-sectional survey

Kaitlyn Howden; Adam P. Yan; Camille Glidden (et al.)

Published: October 2021   Journal: Supportive Care in Cancer

Adolescents and young adults (AYAs) diagnosed with cancer are at an increased risk of experiencing social isolation and loneliness secondary to their cancer and its treatment. The physical distancing measures implemented during the COVID-19 pandemic may have further increased loneliness among this group. This study examined the prevalence of loneliness and factors associated with loneliness among AYAs with cancer during this pandemic. A self-administered, online, cross-sectional survey of Canadian AYAs diagnosed with cancer between 15 and 39 was conducted between January and February 2021. Loneliness was measured using the 3-item UCLA Loneliness Scale. Factors associated with higher levels of loneliness were identified using multiple logistic regression.

Tweens are not teens: the problem of amalgamating broad age groups when making pandemic recommendations

Brae Anne McArthur; Sheri Madigan; Daphne J. Korczak

Published: October 2021   Journal: Canadian Journal of Public Health
Demarcating childhood into two distinct and broad 10-year age bands of over and under age 10 is a disservice to our tween population (9–12 years), and may be overlooking our role in understanding the negative impacts of SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) during a formative period of development. This commentary, discusses the importance of considering tweens as a unique population of youth who are differentially impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. It first describes the distinctive progress of tweens across various facets of developmental health, followed by recommendations to improve understanding and address impact of the pandemic and its restrictions on tweens. The COVID-19 pandemic has had a large impact on the day-to-day lives of tweens and what is done now will have long-lasting effects on their lifelong trajectories.
Perceived changes in lifestyle behaviours and in mental health and wellbeing of elementary school children during the first COVID-19 lockdown in Canada: lifestyles and mental health and wellbeing of children during the lockdown

Katerina Maximova; Mohammad KA. Khan; Julia Dabravolskaj (et al.)

Published: October 2021   Journal: Public Health
The closure of schools to prevent the spread of COVID-19 prompted concerns of deteriorating lifestyle behaviours, mental health and wellbeing of children, particularly those in socioeconomically disadvantaged settings. This study assessed changes in lifestyle behaviours (physical activity, screen time, eating habits and bed/wake-up times), mental health and wellbeing during the first lockdown in Spring 2020 as perceived by school children from disadvantaged settings, and examined determinants of these changes.
Acute care visits for eating disorders among children and adolescents after the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic

Alène Toulany; Paul Kurdy; Astrid Guttmann (et al.)

Published: October 2021   Journal: Journal of Adolescent Health

Anecdotal reports suggest a significant increase in acute presentations of eating disorders among children and adolescents. This study aimed to compare the rates of emergency department visits and hospitalizations for pediatric eating disorders before and during the first 10 months of the COVID-19 pandemic. Using linked health administrative databases, it conducted a population-based repeated cross-sectional study of emergency department visits and hospitalizations for eating disorders among all children and adolescents aged 3–17 years, residing in Ontario, Canada.

iCOPE with COVID-19: a brief telemental health intervention for children and adolescents during the COVID-19 pandemic

Michelle S. Zepeda; Stephanie Deighton; Veronika Markova (et al.)

Published: October 2021   Journal: Cognitive and Behavioral Practice
The COVID-19 pandemic has prompted unprecedented disruptions to the daily lives of children and adolescents worldwide, which has been associated with an increase of anxiety and depressive symptoms in youth. However, due to public health measures, in-person psychosocial care has been affected causing barriers to mental health care access. This study investigated the feasibility, acceptability and preliminary effectiveness of iCOPE with COVID-19, a brief telemental health intervention for children and adolescents to address anxiety symptoms. Sessions were provided exclusively using videoconferencing technology. Feasibility and acceptability were measured with client satisfaction data.
Emotion regulation and diurnal cortisol: a longitudinal study of early adolescents

Katerina Rnic; Ellen Jopling; Alison Tracy (et al.)

Published: October 2021   Journal: Biological Psychology
Aberrant patterns of diurnal cortisol, a marker of stress reactivity, predict adverse physical and mental health among adolescents. However, the mechanisms underlying aberrant diurnal cortisol production are poorly understood. Thus, the objective of this study was to investigate, for the first time, whether the core emotion regulation (ER) strategies of rumination (brooding, reflection), reappraisal, and suppression were prospectively associated with individual differences in diurnal cortisol during the COVID-19 pandemic, a period of significant stress. A community sample of 48 early adolescents (Mage=13.45; 60% males) was recruited from British Columbia, Canada. Participants completed ER measures before the pandemic, and diurnal cortisol was assessed by collecting eight saliva samples over two days during the first COVID-19-related lockdown in the region.
31 - 45 of 120

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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The first digest covers children and youth mental health under COVID-19.

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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.