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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 488
Parental COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy: a cross-sectional survey in Italy

AUTHOR(S)
Aida Bianco; Giorgia Della Polla; Silvia Angelillo (et al.)

Published: January 2022   Journal: Expert Review of Vaccines

Understanding parents’ hesitancy against COVID-19 vaccination for their children is useful. A self-administered online survey was conducted among 394 parents with at least one child aged 12–18 years in Italy.

Home environment and social skills of Japanese preschool children pre- and post-COVID-19

AUTHOR(S)
Xiang Li; Dandan Jiao; Munenori Matsumoto (et al.)

Published: January 2022   Journal: Early Child Development and Care
The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted the daily life and social relationships of pre-school children globally. While many studies have examined the impact of the pandemic on children, few have compared the home environment and children’s social skills before and after the pandemic. To address this research gap, this study used data from the Japan Child Care Cohort study, which included questions on home environment answered by parents (1748 in 2019 and 1349 in 2020) of children aged 0–6 years using self-reported questionnaires and data on the social skills of children aged 1–6 years (1917 in 2019 and 1989 in 2020) that were evaluated by childcare professionals in childcare centres. Using the Chi-square test, home environments and social skills were compared.
Experience of parents of children with genetically determined leukoencephalopathies regarding the adapted health care services during the COVID-19 pandemic

AUTHOR(S)
Pouneh Amir Yazdani; Marie-Lou St-Jean; Sara Matovic (et al.)

Published: January 2022   Journal: Journal of Child Neurology
Parents of children with genetically determined leukoencephalopathies play a major role in their children's health care. Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, many health care services were suspended, delayed or delivered remotely with telemedicine. This study sought to explore the experience of parents of children with genetically determined leukoencephalopathies during the pandemic given the adapted health care services. Ssemistructured interviews with 13 parents of 13 affected children were conducted. Three main themes were identified using thematic analysis: perceived impact of COVID-19 on health care services, benefits and challenges of telemedicine, and expectations of health care after the pandemic. Parents perceived a loss/delay in health care services while having a positive response to telemedicine. Parents wished telemedicine would remain in their care after the pandemic. This is the first study assessing the impact of COVID-19 on health care services in this population.
Increased behavioral health needs and continued psychosocial stress among children with medical complexity and their families during the COVID-19 pandemic

AUTHOR(S)
Jonna von Schulz; Verena Serrano; Melissa Buchholz (et al.)

Published: January 2022   Journal: Infant Mental Health Journal

Children with medical complexity (CMC) and their caregivers are at increased risk for multiple psychosocial stressors that can impact child and family well-being and health outcomes. During the COVID-19 pandemic, when access to supports diminished, psychosocial screening and integrated behavioral health (IBH) services in the primary care setting were crucial in identifying and addressing the unique needs of this population. Universal screening to identify psychosocial needs was implemented in a primary care clinic for CMC that includes IBH services. Data on the prevalence of psychosocial screening and IBH services for young children and their caregivers before and during the COVID-19 pandemic were evaluated.

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.

Mother and child hair cortisol during the COVID-19 pandemic: Associations among physiological stress, pandemic-related behaviors, and child emotional-behavioral health

AUTHOR(S)
Nicole B. Perry; Bonny Donzella; Michael F. Troy (et al.)

Published: January 2022   Journal: Psychoneuroendocrinology
The current study assessed the associations between pandemic-related stressors and physiological stress, as indexed by hair cortisol concentration (HCC), for mothers and their children (N = 180) aged 5–14-years old (M = 8.91). The associations between maternal HCC and children’s HCC and children’s behavioral adjustment were also examined. Mothers reported on COVID-19-related behaviors and children’s adjustment, and both mother and child participants collected and mailed hair samples between August and November of 2020.
Children during coronavirus: Israeli preschool children’ s perspectives

AUTHOR(S)
Or Perah Midbar Alter

Published: January 2022   Journal: Current Research in Ecological and Social Psychology
The corona pandemic has changed the lives of human beings in almost every corner of the globe. This study sought to explore how Israeli children aged 3-6 experienced the corona period, through semi-structured interviews conducted with a playing cards method. The study is based on the context-informed perspective theory (Nadan and Roer-Strier, 2020) which examines the different contexts in the lives of children growing up in different families, while striving to make children's voices heard as agents/experts of their lives (Corsaro, 1997Mayall, 2002). The interviews with the children revealed that the Corona period was indeed a challenging and complex period for them. At the same time, following the intensive stay at home, these children showed mental resilience and took responsibility in three main areas: (1) sibling relationships (2) supporting their parents (3) staying alone. Through taking responsibility for these roles, the children have become partners in coping with the challenges that the Corona and the frequent lockdowns have brought to their family’ s lives.
Parents as educators during lockdown: juggling multiple simultaneous roles to ‘keep atop’ home-schooling amid the COVID-19 pandemic?

AUTHOR(S)
Denise Mifsud

Published: December 2021   Journal: Journal of Educational Administration and History
As from the first quarter of 2020, the spotlight in global news has shone brightly on the Covid-19 pandemic story. One of the major shifts occurred in education as efforts to stem the spread of the virus prompted school closures. Schools gradually shifted to online teaching, and parents were thus forced to combine their regular jobs with supporting the education of their children. Through the collection of qualitative data from focus groups held with various stakeholders, this paper seeks to explore the emerging home-schooling scenario in Malta and the unplanned for and unprecedented adaptation to an online education environment, in order to examine the novel challenges and tensions that emerged between family, school and work. Despite being conducted in a relatively small nation state, this study offers the possibility of opening a dialogue within the global context with ramifications of a new paradigm shift in education, re-shaped by the novel coronavirus.
‘Stranger-danger’* – Israeli children playing with the concept of ‘Corona’ and its’ impact during the COVID-19 pandemic

AUTHOR(S)
Esther Cohen; Esther Bamberger

Published: December 2021   Journal: International Journal of Play
This study examines reports of 118 parents about the play activities of Israeli children aged 3-9 during the COVID-19 pandemic. Parents responded to online questionnaires describing children's play, creative activities and the family's situation. Qualitative analyses revealed changes in both the nature of the children's play activities and in the expressed themes. Findings highlight positive gains in children's development and family relationships. The varied and expansive nature of play seemed to support the children's coping with lockdown and social distancing restrictions. Themes emerging from socio-dramatic play show attempts to deal with fear of coronavirus by seeking imaginary protection and refuge from it, and by attempts to defeat it. Of note are the use of humor and cynicism alongside acts of concern and altruism towards grandparents. This study contributes evidence as to the adaptive abilities of children and the self-healing functions of play, and denote the need to promote them.
‘It was peers and playgrounds that were missing, not play’: young children in Northern Indian homes during the pandemic

AUTHOR(S)
Nandita Chaudhary; Shraddha Kapoor; Punya Pillai

Published: December 2021   Journal: International Journal of Play
Play during early years gives rhythm to children’s lives, and although we make many investments in children’s play in our modern world, it is also true that children play under all conditions, even the most difficult ones. In recent times, social encounters and physical mobility have become impacted, and fear and uncertainty have become constant companions. This article explored children’s play during the pandemic through a series of interviews with adults and children in Northern Indian families, to understand the ways in which their activities had changed. It found that socio-economic context played a key role in defining how and how much children’s play had been impacted and reported. Whereas the vocal middle-class, educated parent recounted many adjustments and anxieties, semi-urban, rural, and urban poor families mostly believed that their children played as usual, slipping out onto the street to play with other children by avoiding scrutiny.
Digital parenting during the COVID-19 lockdowns: how Chinese parents viewed and mediated young children’s digital use

AUTHOR(S)
Simin Cao; Chuanmei Dong; Hui Li

Published: December 2021   Journal: Early Child Development and Care
The COVID-19 lockdowns had forced young children to take digital preschooling and their parents to practize digital parenting. This study explored how Chinese parents viewed and mediated early digital use during the lockdowns. A total of 2491 parents were recruited nationally and surveyed online in late 2020. The results indicated that: (1) Chinese parents held mixed views of early digital use with some being positive (25.09%), and negative (35.13%), and balanced or ambivalent (32.64%); (2) they were concerned about the negative impact on early learning and development even though the lockdown has led to an inevitable surge in digital use; and (3) they mainly perceived parental roles as guides (35.84%) and supervisors (32.04%) and adopted four digital parenting approaches: supervision, active mediation, restrictive mediation, and co-use or co-view. The findings imply that Chinese parents were not ready to cope with the challenges caused by early digital use.
Parental perceptions of the impact of COVID-19 and returning to play based on level of sport

AUTHOR(S)
Michael B. Edwards; Jason N. Bocarro; Kyle S. Bunds (et al.)

Published: December 2021   Journal: Sport in Society
This study examined the impact of COVID-19 on youth sport parents based on competition level to understand how the pandemic affected youth sport and factors associated with youth returning to sport. Survey data were collected from samples of US sport parents in two waves - early in the pandemic (N = 751) and as programs began to resume (N = 707). Data showed elite sport parents were more willing to return. Although most participants returned to play, significant numbers had not resumed participation. Parent comfort was the most important factor associated with resuming. However, parents allowed children to resume play due to perceived external pressure, potentially creating stress among parents regarding sport participation decisions. Attending school in person and household income were associated with the ability to resume sport suggesting the need to provide school sport environments and consider the financial impacts of COVID-19 on sport families.
The moderating effect of parent-child relationship on children’s mental health during COVID-19 quarantine

AUTHOR(S)
Freda Yanrong Wang

Published: December 2021   Journal: Chinese Sociological Review
The mandatory domestic quarantine from 23rd, January to 8th, April in Wuhan due to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is unprecedented in public health history in China. Its impact on people’s short-term negative psychological effects had been reported in both previous and current studies, especially for young children who are vulnerable to home environmental risks. Using data collected before and after Wuhan lockdown among children and parents in a Wuhan kindergarten T, this study provides empirical evidence on the negative impacts on parents and children from the pandemic, and particularly the moderating effect of parent-child relationship on children’s mental health. Qualitative analysis further illustrates that a good parent-child relationship could be fostered by parenting programs aiming at improving parenting skills, enhancing understanding of children’s psychological needs and promoting parent-child interactions. This indicates that parent-child relationship based on effective parenting programs are vital in reducing children’s emotional problems in the face of difficulties and disasters such as the COVID-19 quarantine.
Parent and child mental health trajectories April 2020 to May 2021: strict lockdown versus no lockdown in Australia

AUTHOR(S)
Elizabeth M. Westrupp; Christopher J. Greenwood; Matthew Fuller-Tyszkiewicz (et al.)

Published: December 2021   Journal: The Australian and New Zealand journal of psychiatry

To control a second-wave COVID-19 outbreak, the state of Victoria in Australia experienced one of the world's first long and strict lockdowns over July-October 2020, while the rest of Australia experienced 'COVID-normal' with minimal restrictions. This study investigated trajectories of parent/child mental health outcomes in Victoria vs non-Victoria and identified baseline demographic, individual and COVID-19-related factors associated with mental health trajectories. Online community sample of 2004 Australian parents with rapid repeated assessment over 14 time-points over April 2020 to May 2021. Measures assessed parent mental health (Depression, Anxiety and Stress Scales-21), child depression symptoms (13-item Short Mood and Feelings Questionnaire) and child anxiety symptoms (four items from Brief Spence Children's Anxiety Scale).

Monitoring Australian parents’ shifting receptiveness to digital mental health interventions during the COVID-19 pandemic

AUTHOR(S)
Jake Linardon; Elizabeth M. Westrupp; Jacqui A. Macdonald (et al.)

Published: December 2021   Journal: The Australian and New Zealand journal of psychiatry

Nascent evidence indicates that the mental health of parents and children has markedly declined during the COVID-19 pandemic. Considering disruptions to traditional face-to-face mental health services resultant from stay-at-home orders, the potential value of digital mental health interventions has become extremely apparent. Despite this, uptake of digital interventions remains poor, indicating that a better understanding is needed of factors that determine a willingness to use digital platforms. The present multi-wave, longitudinal study of 2365 Australian parents explored between-person and within-person predictors of intentions to use digital interventions during the pandemic.

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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.