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Children and COVID-19 Research Library

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

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16 - 30 of 210
Child maltreatment-related children's emergency department visits before and during the COVID-19 pandemic in Connecticut

AUTHOR(S)
Michael Amick; Kathryn Bentivegna; Amy A. Hunter (et al.)

Published: April 2022   Journal: Child Abuse & Neglect

Previous studies of national emergency department (ED) data demonstrate a decrease in visits coded for physical abuse during the pandemic period. However, no study to date has examined the incidence of multiple child maltreatment types (physical abuse, sexual abuse, and neglect), within a single state while considering state-specific closure policies. Furthermore, no similar study has utilized detailed chart review to identify cases, nor compared hospital data to Child Protective Services (CPS) reports. This study aims to determine the incidence of child maltreatment-related ED visits before and during the COVID-19 pandemic, including characterizing the type of maltreatment, severity, and CPS reporting.

The unheld child: social work, social distancing and the possibilities and limits to child protection during the COVID-19 pandemic

AUTHOR(S)
Harry Ferguson; Sarah Pink; Laura Kelly

Published: March 2022   Journal: The British Journal of Social Work
The COVID-19 pandemic changed dramatically the ways social workers engaged with children and families. This article presents findings from our research into the effects of COVID-19 on social work and child protection in England during the first nine months of the pandemic. Its aim is to provide new knowledge to enable realistic expectations of what it was possible for social workers to achieve and particularly the limits to child protection. Such perspective has become more important than ever due to knowledge of children who died tragically from abuse despite social work involvement during the pandemic.
The unintended consequences of school closures during COVID-19 on children and young people’s physical health rights -what are they and how can they be mitigated?

AUTHOR(S)
Zoe Picton-Howell

Published: March 2022   Journal: The International Journal of Human Rights
This paper examines the unintended consequences of emergency school closures during the COVID-19 pandemic and explores the impact of these closures on children and young people’s United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) and wider physical health rights. It addresses how States Parties should address and balance these rights during a crisis. It then contextualises the school closures, using global data mainly collated by the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH), exploring the direct health risk to children and young people from COVID-19 and the risk they posed to the wider community, finding both low. It then draws on findings from the Children and Young People’s Commissioner, Scotland’s COVID-19 Independent Children and Young People’s Rights Assessment (ICRA) and wider literature identifying numerous unintended rights breaches, focusing on the rights breaches experienced by three particularly vulnerable groups of children and young people, namely those (i) at risk of physical or sexual violence; (ii) with additional support needs; and (iii) experiencing poverty and deprivation. Recommendations are made as to how to avoid breaching children and young peoples’ physical health rights in future emergency school closures.
The short- and long-term impact of COVID-19 lockdown on child maltreatment

AUTHOR(S)
Mengqing Long; Jia Huang; Yishun Peng (et al.)

Published: March 2022   Journal: International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
The COVID-19 pandemic has brought a new threat to child health and safety. Some studies suggest that social isolation and economic stress have exacerbated child abuse and neglect, whereas other studies argue that orders to stay at home are likely to promote parent–child relationships during this stressful time. Due to a lack of prospective studies including before–during–after lockdown assessments, the impacts of lockdown measures on child maltreatment are unclear. This study retrospectively investigated child maltreatment of 2821 Chinese children and adolescents from 12 to 18 (female, 59%) before, during and after lockdown, and identified risk factors. Potential predictors including socio-economic and individual mental health status were collected.
Incidence of child abuse with subdural hemorrhage during the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic: a nationwide study in France

AUTHOR(S)
Fiorella Caron; Pierre Tourneux; Hyppolite Tchidjou Kuekou (et al.)

Published: March 2022   Journal: European Journal of Pediatrics
The global COVID-19 pandemic prompted governments to impose unprecedented sanitary measures, such as social distancing, curfews, and lockdowns. In France and other countries, the first COVID-19 lockdown raised concerns about an increased risk of child abuse. Abusive head trauma (AHT) is one of the most serious forms of child abuse in children aged 0–24 months and constitutes the leading cause of death in children under 2 years of age. Subdural hemorrhage (SDH) is present in 89% of cases of AHT and constitutes one of the most specific, objective clinical presentations in the diagnosis of child abuse. This French nationwide study sought to evaluate the potential impact of the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic on the incidence of hospital admissions for child abuse with SDH, relative to the two previous years. This study conducted a nationwide, retrospective study of data in the French national hospital discharge summary database by applying the International Classification of Diseases (10th Revision) codes for SDH and for child abuse.
Racial disparities in child exposure to firearm violence before and during COVID-19

AUTHOR(S)
Rachel Martin; Sonali Rajan; Faizah Shareef (et al.)

Published: March 2022   Journal: American Journal of Preventive Medicine

Childhood exposure to neighborhood firearm violence adversely affects mental and physical health across the life course. Study objectives were to (1) quantify racial disparities in these exposures across the U.S. and (2) assess changes during the COVID-19 pandemic, when firearm violence increased. The study used counts of children aged 5–17 years, disaggregated by U.S. Census racial category, for every census tract (N=73,056). Neighborhood firearm violence was the number of fatal shootings per census tract, based on 2015–2021 Gun Violence Archive data. Quasi-Poisson regressions were used to estimate baseline disparities and COVID-19‒related changes and examined differences across geographic regions.

Supporting children experiencing family violence during the COVID-19 pandemic: IPV and CPS provider perspectives

AUTHOR(S)
Lauren Risser; Rachel P. Berger; Veronica Renov (et al.)

Published: March 2022   Journal: Academic Pediatrics

Children experiencing family violence (child abuse and neglect and exposure to intimate partner violence) are at a particularly elevated risk for compounding challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic. In this study, intimate partner violence (IPV) advocates, child protective services (CPS) caseworkers, and IPV and CPS administrators on the needs of children experiencing family violence during the pandemic were interviewed. Semi-structured interviews with IPV advocates, CPS caseworkers, and IPV and CPS administrators were conducted. Recruitment occurred through emails to national and state listservs, networks of the study team, and word of mouth. Interviews were completed through Zoom, took 45 to 60 minutes and were audio recorded. A mixed deductive-inductive content analysis approach was used.

Rate and severity of radiological features of physical abuse in children during the first UK-wide COVID-19 enforced national lockdown

AUTHOR(S)
Stavros Stivaros; Michael Paddock; Azita Rajai (et al.)

Published: February 2022   Journal: Archives of Disease in Childhood

This paper aims to assess the number, type and outcome of radiological investigations for children presenting to hospital with suspected physical abuse (SPA; including abusive head trauma) during the first national COVID-19 enforced lockdown compared with the prelockdown period. Rate and severity of radiological features of physical abuse in children during the first UK-wide COVID-19 enforced national lockdown.

Association of economic recession and social distancing with pediatric non-accidental trauma during COVID-19

AUTHOR(S)
Ruth A. Lewit; Meera Kotagal; Vincent P. Duron (et al.)

Published: February 2022   Journal: Journal of Surgical Research

There has been concern that the incidence of non-accidental trauma (NAT) cases in children would rise during the COVID-19 pandemic due to the combination of social isolation and economic depression. This study aimed to evaluate NAT incidence and severity during the pandemic across multiple US cities. Multi-institutional, retrospective cohort study comparing NAT rates in children <18 years old during the COVID-19 pandemic (March-August 2020) with recent historical data (January 2015-February 2020) and during a previous economic recession (January 2007-December 2011) at level 1 Pediatric Trauma Centers. Comparisons were made to local and national macroeconomic indicators.

Child abuse and the COVID-19 pandemic

AUTHOR(S)
Christina M. Theodorou; Erin G. Brown; Jordan E. Jackson (et al.)

Published: February 2022   Journal: Journal of Surgical Research

The COVID-19 pandemic had widespread effects, including enhanced psychosocial stressors and stay-at-home orders which may be associated with higher rates of child abuse. This study aimed to evaluate rates of child abuse, neglect, and inadequate supervision during the COVID-19 pandemic. Patients ≤5 years old admitted to a level one pediatric trauma center between 3/19/20-9/19/20 (COVID-era) were compared to a pre-COVID cohort (3/19/19-9/19/19). The primary outcome was the rate of child abuse, neglect, or inadequate supervision, determined by Child Protection Team and Social Work consultations. Secondary outcomes included injury severity score (ISS), mortality, and discharge disposition.

Impact of “Stay-at-home” orders on non-accidental trauma: a multi-institutional study

AUTHOR(S)
Amelia T. Collings; Manzur Farazi; Kyle Van Arendonk (et al.)

Published: February 2022   Journal: Journal of Pediatric Surgery

It is unclear how Stay-at-Home Orders (SHO) of the COVID-19 pandemic impacted the welfare of children and rates of non-accidental trauma (NAT). This study hypothesized that NAT would initially decrease during the SHO as children did not have access to mandatory. A multicenter study evaluating patients <18 years with ICD-10 Diagnosis and/or External Cause of Injury codes meeting criteria for NAT. “Historical” controls from an averaged period of March-September 2016-2019 were compared to patients injured March-September 2020, after the implementation of SHO (“COVID” cohort). An interrupted time series analysis was utilized to evaluate the effects of SHO implementation.

Child maltreatment during school and childcare closure due to the COVID-19 pandemic

AUTHOR(S)
Samantha Vermeulen; Lenneke R. A. Alink; Sheila R. van Berkel (et al.)

Published: February 2022   Journal: Child Maltreatment
The aim of the present study was to examine child maltreatment prevalence rates during the first COVID-19 related national closure of schools and childcare settings (the lockdown) in the Netherlands. Based on reports of childcare professionals and primary and secondary school teachers (N = 444) the prevalence of child maltreatment during the 3 months of this first lockdown was estimated at almost 40,000 children, or 14 per 1,000 children. The prevalence of emotional neglect was found to be three times higher during the lockdown compared to a period without lockdown. This significant difference was reflected in overall emotional neglect as well as for two main subtypes of emotional neglect: educational neglect and witnessing domestic violence. No significant differences were found for other types of child maltreatment. Most of the reported cases of maltreatment were already problematic before the lockdown and became worse during the lockdown.
The unprotected: annual spotlight on child protection funding in humanitarian action - 2021

Children make up 50% of those affected in humanitarian crises and are disproportionately impacted by conflict and crisis. Throughout 2020 and 2021, COVID-19, conflict and climate change have been impacting children at unprecedented scale, putting them at risk and driving displacement, poverty and violence. Whilst funding for child protection is increasing, child protection consistently remains one of the most underfunded sectors in humanitarian action and funds not meeting increasing needs. Closing this gap will require collective action to change the way we think about children’s protection and its centrality to crisis response. This report highlights key areas associated with funding for child protection in humanitarian crises, including both cluster and refugee responses in 2020. A snapshot is also given for 2021 with data available as of October 2021

Mental health & maltreatment risk of children with special educational needs during COVID-19

AUTHOR(S)
Winnie W. Y. Tso; Ko Ling Chan; Tatia M. C. Lee (et al.)

Published: January 2022   Journal: Child Abuse & Neglect

Children with special educational needs (SEN) are more vulnerable during the COVID-19 pandemic with risk of poor mental wellbeing and child maltreatment. To examine the impact of COVID-19 on the mental health of children with SEN and their maltreatment risk. 417 children with SEN studying at special schools and 25,427 children with typical development (TD) studying at mainstream schools completed an online survey in April 2020 in Hong Kong during school closures due to COVID-19.

In their own words: child and adolescent perceptions of caregiver stress during early COVID-19

AUTHOR(S)
Yuan He; Robin Ortiz; Rachel Kishton (et al.)

Published: January 2022   Journal: Child Abuse & Neglect

The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has exacerbated multiple stressors for caregivers of children in the United States, raising concern for increased family conflict, harsh parenting, and child maltreatment. Little is known regarding children's perceptions and experiences of caregiver stress during the COVID-19 pandemic. This study aimed to examine how children and adolescents identify and experience caregiver stress during the early COVID-19 pandemic. It analyzed 105 de-identified helpline text and online chat transcripts from children under age 18 who submitted inquiries to the Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline from March to June of 2020, with COVID-19 as a presenting issue. Inductive, thematic analysis was used to identify how child helpline users: 1) perceived and experienced drivers of caregiver stress and 2) used words to describe manifestations of caregiver stress during the COVID-19 pandemic.

16 - 30 of 210

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.