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The protection situation during COVID-19 in Syria. The impact of COVID-19 on protection activities and on vulnerable groups

PROTECTION CLUSTER, UNHCR
February 2021

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After nearly nine months of preventative COVID-19 measures in place by the Government of Syria, the protection sector and its area of responsibilities ( Child Protection AoR, Gender Based Violence AoR and Mine Action AoR) have attempted to understand the level and types of impact this has had on the implementation of activities, specifically on partners' ability to provide services through community centers, and on the most vulnerable groups of the served population. The aim is that this report will provide protection partners with key information for reviewing and revising their current activities in light of the ongoing pandemic.

The data presented in this report was gathered during December 2020 from 213 protection partners and staff working directly or through partners with the affected population throughout Syria through an online survey. The main protection issues affecting persons with disabilities as a result of COVID-19 situation are identified.

Perspectives on access and usage of assistive technology by people with intellectual disabilities in the Western Cape province of South Africa: Where to from here?

BOOT, Fleur H
KAHONDE, Callista
DINSMORE, John
MACLACHLAN, Malcolm
2021

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Background: Whilst assistive technology (AT) can play an important role to improve quality of life, health inequity regarding access to appropriate AT for people with intellectual disabilities (ID) is still very much present especially in low resource countries.

 

Objectives: This study focused on exploring factors that influence access to and continued use of AT by people with ID in the Western Cape province of South Africa and to suggest potential implications of these findings and actions required to promote access to AT.

 

Method: A qualitative approach was used to explore the experiences of people with ID and providers of AT. Face-to-face interviews with 20 adults with mild to profound ID, and 17 providers of AT were conducted and the data were analysed thematically.

 

Results: People with ID within the study setting faced many challenges when trying to access AT and for those who managed to acquire AT, its continued usage was influenced by both personal characteristics of the user and environmental factors. Important factors that influence AT access and use for people with ID found in this study were (1) attitudes from the community, (2) knowledge and awareness to identify AT need and (3) AT training and instructions to support the user and care network.

 

Conclusion: With the perspectives of both the providers and users of AT, this study identified priority factors, which could be addressed to improve AT access and use for people with ID in the Western Cape province.

Impact of Covid-19 on people with disabilities in Albania

LAHE, Alma
SHEHU, Arlinda
January 2021

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This report aims to assess the level of access that People with Disabilities have to services and institutions during the pandemic period, as well as to analyze their economic and financial needs to cope with the consequences of the crisis caused by COVID-19.

The survey was conducted in the form of a quantitative field survey. 360 individuals participated in the survey: 199, or 55.3%, of the participants were people with disabilities (PWDs) while the remaining 161 persons, or 44.7%, were guardians or parents of a person with disabilities. The survey was conducted in all 6 districts of the country. The questionnaire was designed to gather information on the perceptions, attitudes, behaviors and experiences of people with disabilities during the COVID-19 period.

Children with disabilities. Ensuring their inclusion in COVID-19 response strategies and evidence generation

UNITED NATIONS CHILDREN'S FUND (UNICEF)
December 2020

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Even before the COVID-19 pandemic struck, children with disabilities were among the most disadvantaged, facing increased exposure to abuse and discrimination and reduced access to services in many parts of the world. Understanding these pre-existing vulnerabilities can help anticipate how the COVID-19 pandemic could sharpen existing inequities and can shed light on where targeted efforts may be required.

The publication below draws on pre-COVID data to highlight how children with disabilities face greater risks in the midst of this pandemic. It documents what has happened to services for children and adults with disabilities across the world and includes examples of what has been done to address disruptions in services. It also discusses the challenges in generating disability-inclusive data during the pandemic.

Economic assessment of a community-based care package for people with lower limb disorder caused by lymphatic filariasis, podoconiosis and leprosy in Ethiopia

HOUNSOME, Natalia
KINFE, Mersha
SEMRAU, Maya
ALI, Oumer
TESFAYE, Abraham
MENGISTE, Asrat
BREMNER, Stephen
AHMED, Abdulkadir
FEKADU, Abebaw
DAVEY, Gail
December 2020

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We conducted an implementation research study to integrate a holistic package of physical health, mental health and psychosocial care for podoconiosis, lymphatic filariasis and leprosy into routine healthcare in Gusha cluster, Guagusa Shikudad district, northwest Ethiopia. The healthcare package included training patients in lower limb hygiene and skin care and provision of shoes, hygiene supplies and medication. The implementation activities included training events, workshops, awareness raising, self-help groups, supportive supervision, staff secondments and advisory board meeting. 

 

Transactions of The Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, Volume 114, Issue 12, December 2020, Pages 1021–1034

https://doi.org/10.1093/trstmh/traa111
 

COVID-19 Resources and templates

MOTIVATION AUSTRALIA
October 2020

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Links to resources on information about COVID-19 for the general public and also specifically for health workers are provided. Links are provided for country specific information.

A COVID safe workplace plan template and a COVID workplace attendance register template have been developed to help health services and departments in the Pacific region to plan for and prevent the spread of COVID-19 in their workplace.

 

Reflection on the 30th Anniversary of the ADA in time of mass uncertainty

LeBLANC, Nicole
October 2020

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Nicole LeBlanc, a disability rights activist, talks about the 30th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and what she hopes for the next 30 years. Areas highlighted on the road to achieving equality and equity for all include health and health services, housing, flexible working, vocational rehabilitation and disaster preparedness.

Disability rights during the pandemic. A global report on findings of the COVID-19 Disability Rights Monitor

BRENNAN, Ciara Siobhan
October 2020

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This report presents the findings from a rapid global survey of persons with disabilities and other stakeholders which took place between April and August 2020. The organisations behind the study seek to “catalyse urgent action in the weeks and months to come,” as transmission rates of COVID-19 continue to rise in many countries and persons with disabilities are again subjected to restrictions which have already had severe consequences.

The report analyses over 2,100 responses to the survey from 134 countries around the world. The vast majority of responses were from individuals with disabilities and their family members. Within the questionnaire responses respondents provided more than 3,000 written testimonies documenting the experiences of persons with disabilities and their family members during the pandemic. The qualitative and quantitative data provide in-depth, comprehensive insights into the experiences of persons with disabilities and the consequences of government actions or inactions on the rights of persons with disabilities.

The report is organised around four themes which emerged during the process of analysing responses received to the survey. These themes are:

1. Inadequate measures to protect persons with disabilities in institutions

2. Significant and fatal breakdown of community supports

3. Disproportionate impact on underrepresented groups of persons with disabilities

4. Denial of access to healthcare

 

A webinar was held to mark the launch of the report

Barriers to accessing primary healthcare services for people with disabilities in low and middle-income countries, a Meta-synthesis of qualitative studies

HASHEMI, Goli
WICKENDEN, Mary
BRIGHT, Tess
KUPER, Hannah
2020

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Background: Access to healthcare contributes to the attainment of health and is a fundamental human right. People with disabilities are believed to experience widespread poor access to healthcare services, due to inaccessible environments and discriminatory belief systems and attitudes. Qualitative data on these bar- riers has not previously been systematically reviewed. A meta-synthesis was undertaken of qualitative studies exploring the barriers to primary healthcare services experienced by people with disabilities in low- and mid- dle-income countries.

 

Methods: Six electronic databases were searched for relevant studies from 2000 to 2019. Forty-one eli- gible studies were identified.

 

Results: Findings suggest that the people with disabilities’ choice to seek healthcare services or not, as well as the quality of intervention provided by primary healthcare providers, are influenced by three types of barriers: cultural beliefs or attitudinal barriers, informational barriers, and practical or logis- tical barriers.

 

Conclusion: In order to achieve full health coverage at acceptable quality for people with disabilities, it is necessary not only to consider the different barriers, but also their combined effect on people with dis- abilities and their households. It is only then that more nuanced and effective interventions to improve access to primary healthcare, systematically addressing barriers, can be designed and implemented.

COVID-19, Amplifying Voices: Our Lives, Our Say: Learning from COVID-19 through the experiences of blind and partially sighted persons across the world

ZAYED, Yana
et al
August 2020

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The World Blind Union (WBU) conducted a study to examine the extent to which COVID-19 pandemic has exposed some deep structural inequalities in society. Data gathered from the study is evidencing that persons with disabilities, older persons, and persons from lower socioeconomic status backgrounds are among those hardest hit by the pandemic. While this report puts a spotlight on the voices of blind and partially sighted persons, many of the experiences shared strongly resonate with numerous other studies that are also highlighting how marginalised groups have been affected by this crisis. Through this report, WBU hopes to raise awareness on the specifics of what those challenges have meant in reality for its constituents, as well as shed light on what have been effective resilience strategies for them. The study was made possible with the support of CBM Global

To understand the situation of our constituents, the World Blind Union (WBU) conducted a global survey in collaboration with key stakeholders. In April 2020, the WBU launched an open online survey for seven weeks in Spanish, French and English, seeking information from blind and partially sighted persons on how COVID-19 was impacting their day to day life. 853 people participated in the survey. The respondents expressed in their own words how their lives had been and continue to be impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. This report is a compilation of those voices. It depicts the ways in which COVID-19 response measures taken by state and non-state actors have created additional barriers and challenges for blind and partially sighted people. It also includes powerful testimonies on how people have shown resilience in the face of adversity.

 

 

Children with disabilities and COVID-19

UNICEF
July 2020

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This guidance has been produced for UNICEF’s East Asia and the Pacific Regional Office and UNICEF Australia. This document is intended for frontline workers, including UNICEF partners, health personnel, social workers, teachers, help line staff and community volunteers engaged in the COVID-19 response. It is recommended that this document is read in conjunction with the Minimum Care Package, CBM’s Disability Inclusion in COVID-19 Preparedness and Response guidance note, UNICEF’s EAPR Child Protection Emergency Preparedness and Response to COVID-19 and the global Technical Note: Protection of Children during the Coronavirus Pandemic

The digital lives of refugees and Kenyans with disabilities in Nairobi: A human-centred design approach to identifying mobile-enabled opportunities

HAMILTON, Zoe
CASSWELL, Jenny
ALONSO, Aline
July 2020

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This research focuses on disability, using human-centred design methods to better understand how refugees and Kenyans with visual and hearing impairments in Nairobi use mobile technology and potential opportunities that it could provide.

The target populations for the project were urban refugees and host communities with visual or hearing impairments in Nairobi, Kenya. 

 

This report is divided into four main sections, following an introduction, the second section focuses on insights learned from the hearing impaired, the third on the visually impaired and the fourth highlighting issues that were cross-cutting insights across both groups. Sections two and three include insights related to mobile, health and financial services. The fourth section includes insights related to humanitarian and disability support services

 

Inequalities in utilization of essential antenatal services for women with disabilities: An analysis of the 2017-18 Pakistan Demographic and Health Survey. DHS working paper. No.166

HAMEED, Waqas
ASIM, Muhammad
July 2020

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Although the number of disabled women entering motherhood is growing, there is little quantitative evidence about the utilization of essential antenatal care services by women with disabilities. The aim of this study is to examine inequalities in the use of essential antenatal services between women with and without disabilities.

This study analyzed data from the Pakistan Demographic and Health Survey 2017-18 on 6,791 women (age 15-49) who had a live birth in the 5 years before the survey. Multiple logistic regression was used to test the study hypothesis. 

Research questions addressed were:

1. What are the levels of inequalities in the use of essential ANC services between women with and without disabilities, and by the type of disability?

2. How is the relationship between women’s disability and the utilization of essential ANC antenatal moderated by women’s wealth status and urban versus rural residence? 

A systematic review of the cost-effectiveness of emergency interventions for stroke in low- and middle-income countries

BARBOSA, Euridxe
et al
June 2020

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This systematic review surveys the existing evidence surrounding the cost-effectiveness of interventions to address acute stroke in LMIC settings. Five databases were searched for articles related to the cost-effectiveness of emergency care interventions to treat acute stroke in LMICs.

 

https://doi.org/10.1016/j.afjem.2020.05.009

 

African Journal of Emergency Medicine

Available online 11 June 2020
 

Access to SRH services for persons with disabilities: mapping the evidence

LAGAAY, Mary
MONTEATH-van DOK, Adrienne
June 2020

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A blog looking at the body of evidence for persons with disabilities (PWD) outlines that historically PWD have been denied their SRH (sexual and reproductive health) rights, despite having the same sexual needs as people without disabilities. It goes into to comment on the knowledge gaps that still need closing and to introduce an Evidence Gap Map

COVID-19 in humanitarian contexts: no excuses to leave persons with disabilities behind! Evidence from HI's operations in humanitarian settings

HUMANITY & INCLUSION (HI)
June 2020

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This collection and review of evidence aims to illustrate how the COVID-19 crisis triggers disproportionate risks and barriers for men, women, boys and girls with disabilities living in humanitarian settings. It highlights recommendations for humanitarian actors, to enhance inclusive action, aligned with existing guidance and learnings on disability inclusion. It is based on evidence, including testimonies, collected by HI programs in 19 countries of intervention. Special efforts were made to reflect the voices of persons with different types of disabilities, genders and ages, residing in different geographical areas and living circumstances, including refugee and internally displaced persons’ settlements and host communities.

 

Evidence has been collected through primary data collection among HI teams and partners, working in countries impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic in April/May 2020. Data was extracted from assessments conducted by HI and partners in Bangladesh, Egypt, Haïti, Indonesia, Philippines, Jordan, Lebanon, Somaliland and Togo. Testimonies from affected communities, staff and partners were collected in Kenya, Myanmar, Pakistan, Palestine, Philippines, Somaliland, South Sudan, Rwanda, Thailand, Uganda and Yemen.

 

Disability Inclusive Development - Kenya Situational Analysis

ROHWERDER, Brigitte
June 2020

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This situational analysis (SITAN) addresses the question: “what is the current situation for persons with disabilities in Kenya?”. It has been prepared for the Disability Inclusive Development programme (which works on access to education, jobs, healthcare, and reduced stigma and discrimination for persons with disabilities in Bangladesh, Jordan, Kenya, Nepal, Nigeria, and Tanzania), to better understand the current context, including COVID-19, and available evidence in Kenya. It will be helpful for anyone interested in disability inclusion in Kenya, especially in relation to stigma, employment, education, health, and humanitarian issues. This SITAN has been briefly updated from the April 2019 SITAN.

Disability Inclusive Development - Nepal Situational Analysis

ROHWERDER, Brigitte
June 2020

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This situational analysis (SITAN) addresses the question: “what is the current situation for persons with disabilities in Nepal?”. It has been prepared for the Disability Inclusive Development programme (which works on access to education, jobs, healthcare, and reduced stigma and discrimination for persons with disabilities in Bangladesh, Jordan, Kenya, Nepal, Nigeria, and Tanzania), to better understand the current context, including COVID-19, and available evidence in Nepal. It will be helpful for anyone interested in disability inclusion in Nepal, especially in relation to stigma, employment, education, health, and humanitarian issues. This SITAN has been briefly updated from the April 2019 SITAN.

Disability Inclusive Development - Tanzania Situational Analysis

ROHWERDER, Brigitte
June 2020

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This situational analysis (SITAN) addresses the question: “what is the current situation for persons with disabilities in Tanzania?”. It has been prepared for the Disability Inclusive Development programme (which works on access to education, jobs, healthcare, and reduced stigma and discrimination for persons with disabilities in Bangladesh, Jordan, Kenya, Nepal, Nigeria, and Tanzania), to better understand the current context, including COVID-19, and available evidence in Tanzania. It will be helpful for anyone interested in disability inclusion in Tanzania, especially in relation to stigma, employment, education, health, and humanitarian issues. This SITAN has been briefly updated from the April 2019 SITAN.

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