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This year’s The State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World (SOFI) summarizes the first global assessment of food insecurity and malnutrition for 2020 and offers some indication of what hunger and malnutrition would look like by 2030, in a scenario further complicated by the enduring effects of the pandemic. Nearly one-tenth of the world population – up to 811 million people went hungry in 2020. After remaining virtually unchanged for five years, world hunger increased last year. Further, it is projected that around 660 million people may still face hunger in 2030, 30 million more people than in a scenario in which the pandemic had not occurred, due to lasting effects of COVID-19 on global food security. The setback makes the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goal for zero hunger and ending all forms of malnutrition more challenging. The report indicates that progress has been made for some forms of malnutrition, but the world is not on track to achieve any global nutrition targets by 2030. Globally, 44 percent of infants under 6 months of age were exclusively breastfed in 2019 – up from 37 percent in 2012 but the practice varies considerably among regions. Child malnutrition still persists at an alarming rate –an estimated 149 million children were stunted, 45 million were wasted and 39 million were overweight in 2020. The report presents new projections of potential additional cases of child stunting and wasting due to COVID-19. Based on a conservative scenario, it is projected that an additional 22 million children in low- and middle-income countries will be stunted, an additional 40 million will be wasted between 2020 and 2030 due to the pandemic. Comprehensive and urgent efforts are required to address the detrimental effects of the pandemic and achieve the 2030 global targets.
Since the first identified case on 2 March 2020 until 13 July 2021, more than 1,200 people have lost their lives, meaning that too many boys and girls suffered the tragic and permanent loss of a grandparent, parent, caregiver or loved one. More than 46,860 persons tested positive, implying that and even greater number of loved ones might have fallen ill, making it hard for them to care for family, keep plans or sustain employment. Meanwhile, almost every household in Senegal was affected by restrictions designed to contain the first wave. While the strict measures were largely successful in limiting the spread of the virus, they also affected key sectors of the economy, disrupted supply chains and markets, and affected both the demand for, and availability of, social services. Essentially, COVID-19 impacted almost every aspect of life, particularly in the first quarter of 2020, which we now recognize as the first “leg” in a multi-year, planet-wide marathon to outpace the pandemic. With the closure of schools and disruption of many basic services, child protection mechanisms also lapsed, triggering a crisis for children with considerable socio-economic costs.
At the height of nationwide lockdowns due to the COVID-19 pandemic, more than 150 million children younger than 5 years in East Asia and the Pacific were affected. The pandemic brought service provision for young children in many of the 27 countries supported by UNICEF programmes that promote nurturing care and are essential to their optimal development to a standstill. Yet, even before the pandemic, more than 42 million children in the region were at risk of not reaching their developmental potential. Using the latest available evidence, this report summarizes the impact of the pandemic on services essential for young children’s development: For example, that the number of children younger than 5 years visiting community health centres in Viet Nam dropped by 48 per cent; that in Indonesia, more than 50 per cent of households reported not being able to meet their family’s nutritional needs; or that in the Philippines, more than 80 per cent of households experienced a decrease in their household income. Households facing disadvantages before COVID-19 – those with young children, those living in rural and remote areas and low-income households – are in most cases more disproportionally affected by the pandemic.
Maila D. H. Rahiem
Worldwide, there has been a massive increase in child marriages following the COVID-19 crisis. In Indonesia, too, this figure has risen with Indonesia ranked amongst ten countries with the highest rates of child marriage in the world. One of the Indonesian provinces with a high incidence of child marriage cases is in Nusa Tenggara Barat (NTB). This study aims to examine what is causing the rate of child marriages to increase since the outbreak of COVID-19 in NTB.
Shuaibu Saidu Musa; Goodness Ogeyi Odey; Muhammad Kabir Musa (et al.)
Jay Saha; Pradip Chouhan
The novel Coronavirus disease 2019 (2019-nCoV) outbreak, caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome Coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2), has become the worst serious global risk to humanity in the last century and linked with various risk factors. This study aims to find out the risk zone associated with Coronavirus disease among children under-five age using malnourished status, pre-existing morbidity conditions, poor household environmental conditions, and also with case fatality rate (CFR) and active case rate (ACR) of COVID-19 in India.
Laura J. Samuel; Darrell J. Gaskin; Antonio, J. Trujillo (et al.)
Communities with more Black or Hispanic residents have higher coronavirus rates than communities with more White residents, but relevant community characteristics are underexplored. The purpose of this study was to investigate poverty-, race- and ethnic-based disparities and associated economic, housing, transit, population health and health care characteristics. Six-month cumulative coronavirus incidence and mortality were examined using adjusted negative binomial models among all U.S. counties (n = 3142). County-level independent variables included percentages in poverty and within racial/ethnic groups (Black, Hispanic, Native American, Asian), and rates of unemployment, lacking a high school diploma, housing cost burden, single parent households, limited English proficiency, diabetes, obesity, smoking, uninsured, preventable hospitalizations, primary care physicians, hospitals, ICU beds and households that were crowded, in multi-unit buildings or without a vehicle.
Sani Dan Aoude
Shivani Kachwaha; Phuong Nguyen; Anjali Pant (et al.)
Gizem Deniz Bulucu Büyüksoy; Aslıhan Çatıker; Kamuran Özdil
This study aims to examine the incidence of food insecurity and affecting factors in households with children in Turkey during the COVID-19 pandemic. The participants were recruited by the snowball sampling method and the data were collected via a link sent to their smart mobile phones through their social media accounts. This study included 211 households with at least one child.
Abiy Seifu Estifanos; Kescha Kazmi; Shaun K. Morris
Ethiopia has made remarkable progress in reducing childhood and neonatal mortality in the last two decades. However, with the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic in Ethiopia, disruptions in routine health care pose a significant risk in reversing the gains made in neonatal mortality reduction. Using the World Health Organization’s health systems building blocks framework we examined the mechanisms by which the pandemic may impact neonatal health.
Oliver Fiala; Enrique Delamónica; Gerardo Escaroz (et al.)
Anna Josephson; Talip Kilic; Jeffrey D. Michler
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.
Read the latest quarterly digest on children and youth mental health under COVID-19.
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COVID-19 & Children: Rapid Research Response