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Children and COVID-19 Research Library

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

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From SARS to COVID-19: What we have learned about children infected with COVID-19

AUTHOR(S)
Meng Yao Zhou; Xiao-li Xie; Yong-gang Peng; et al.

Published: July 2020   International Journal of Infectious Diseases
Coronaviruses, both SARS-CoV and SARS-CoV-2, first appeared in China. They have certain biological, epidemiological and pathological similarities. To date, research has shown that their genes exhibit 79% of identical sequences and the receptor-binding domain structure is also very similar. There has been extensive research performed on SARS; however, the understanding of the pathophysiological impact of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is still limited.
COVID-19 in Children: An Ample Review

AUTHOR(S)
Ioana M Ciuca

Published: June 2020   Risk management and healthcare policy
The aim of this review was to describe the current knowledge about coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19, which is caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 [SARS-CoV-2]) in children, from epidemiological, clinical, and laboratory perspectives, including knowledge on the disease course, treatment, and prognosis. An extensive literature search was performed to identify papers on COVID-19 (SARS-CoV-2 infection) in children, published between January 1, 2020 and April 1, 2020. There were 44 relevant papers on COVID-19 in children. The results showed that COVID-19 occurs in 0.39–12.3% of children. Clinical signs and symptoms are comparable to those in adults, but milder forms and a large percentage of asymptomatic carriers are found among children. Elevated inflammatory markers are associated with complications and linked to various co-infections. Chest computed tomography (CT) scans in children revealed structural changes similar to those found in adults, with consolidations surrounded by halos being somewhat specific for children with COVID-19. The recommended treatment includes providing symptomatic therapy, with no specific drug recommendations for children. The prognosis is much better for children compared to adults. This review highlights that COVID-19 in children is similar to the disease in the adult population, but with particularities regarding clinical manifestations, laboratory test results, chest imaging, and treatment. The prognosis is much better for children compared to adults, but with the progression of the pandemic; the cases in children might change in the future.
Resistance of children to Covid-19. How?

AUTHOR(S)
Alain Fischer

Published: May 2020   Nature Mucosal Immunology
Both resistance to infection and resistance to disease appear to be much stronger in children than in adults. The apparent resistance to infection might actually reflect a more rapid clearance of the virus so that the chance to detect cases is diminished. Future studies on seropositivity prevalence should help to distinguish between these possibilities. Of note the increased male to female ratio as observed in adult Covid-19 patients (6 to 4) is also observed in children. Finally, children below the age of 1 year are over-represented in pediatric Covid-19 cohorts with a higher risk of fatality compared with children above the age of 1.
SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19): What do we know about children? A systematic review

AUTHOR(S)
Nisha Metha; Oliver Mytton; Edward Mullins; et al.

Published: May 2020   Clinical Infectious Diseases
This systematic review aims to understand the infection rate, clinical presentation, clinical outcomes and transmission dynamics for SARS-CoV-2, in order to inform clinical and public health measures. Children appear to be less affected by COVID-19 than adults by observed rate of cases in large epidemiological studies. Limited data on attack rate indicate that children are just as susceptible to infection. Data on clinical outcomes are scarce but include several reports of asymptomatic infection and a milder course of disease in young children, though radiological abnormalities are noted. Severe cases are not reported in detail and there are little data relating to transmission.
Pandemics and Violence Against Women and Children

AUTHOR(S)
Amber Peterman; Alina Potts; Megan O'Donnell; Kelly Thompson; Niyati Shah; Sabine Oertelt-Prigione; Nicole van Geltert

Published: April 2020 UNICEF Innocenti Publication
Times of economic uncertainty, civil unrest and disaster are linked to a myriad of risk factors for increased violence against women and children (VAW/C). Pandemics are no exception. In fact, the regional or global nature and associated fear and uncertainty associated with pandemics provide an enabling environment that may exacerbate or spark diverse forms of violence. Understanding mechanisms underlying these dynamics are important for crafting policy and program responses to mitigate adverse effects. Based on existing published and grey literature, we document nine main (direct and indirect) pathways linking pandemics and VAW/C, through effects of (on):(1) economic insecurity and poverty-related stress, (2) quarantines and social isolation, (3) disaster and conflict-related unrest and instability, (4) exposure to exploitative relationships due to changing demographics, (5) reduced health service availability and access to first responders, (6) inability of women to temporarily escape abusive partners, (7) virus-specific sources of violence, (8) exposure to violence and coercion in response efforts, and (9) violence perpetrated against health care workers. We also suggest additional pathways with limited or anecdotal evidence likely to effect smaller sub-groups. Based on these mechanisms, we suggest eight policy and program responses for action by governments, civil society, international and community-based organizations. Finally, as research linking pandemics directly to diverse forms of VAW/C is scarce, we lay out a research agenda comprising three main streams, to better (1) understand the magnitude of the problem, (2) elucidate mechanisms and linkages with other social and economic factors and (3) inform intervention and response options. We hope this paper can be used by researchers, practitioners, and policymakers to help inform further evidence generation and policy action while situating VAW/C within the broader need for intersectional gender- and feminist-informed pandemic response.
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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. Learn more.

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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.