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The impacts of COVID-19 on people with disabilities: a rapid review. Disability Inclusion Helpdesk Query No: 35

MEANIE-DAVIS, Jessie
LEE, Harri
CORBY, Nick
April 2020

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There is currently very limited data and evidence on the impacts of COVID-19 on people with disabilities and pre-existing health conditions, with no disability-disaggregated data on mortality rates available in the public sphere. However, reports from the media, disability advocates and disabled peoples’ organisations (DPOs) point to several emerging impacts, including primary and secondary impacts including on health, education, food security and livelihoods.  Most of the available data is from high income countries (HICs) though reports from low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) are likely to emerge. Evidence was gathered by a rapid desk based review. Gaps are identified. 

 

The section concerned with lessons drawn from similar epidemics draws heavily on lessons learned from the Ebola outbreak in West Africa in 2014-2016, and touches on lessons from the Zika outbreak in 2015-2016 and the SARS pandemic in the early 2000s.10 It also touches briefly on SARS, MERS and H1N1 (swine flu). 

 

Primary and secondary impacts of COVID-19 on people with disabilities are reviewed.


People with disabilities are disproportionately impacted by COVID-19 not only because it can exacerbate underlying medical conditions, but because of attitudinal, environmental and institutional barriers to their participation in and benefit from the pandemic response. For example, inaccessible public health messaging and healthcare facilities, and stigma and discrimination.

LEARNING MUST GO ON: Recommendations for keeping children safe and learning, during and after the COVID-19 crisis

April 2020

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This brief highlights some of the potential impacts of school closures (associated with the impact on the COVID-19 on children) with a focus on the most marginalised, including those already living in crisis and conflict contexts. It provides recommendations for governments and donors, together with partners, to ensure that safe, quality and inclusive learning reaches all children and that education systems are strengthened ready for the return to school

Applying humanitarian standards to fight COVID-19

SPHERE
April 2020

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Contents of this short brief include:

  • Sphere Standards
  • The Core Humanitarian Standard
  • The Humanitarian Standards Partnership
  • Cash Assistance
  • Inclusion of older people and people with disabilities
  • Education in Emergencies
  • Child Protection
  • Markets and Economic Recovery 

COVID-19 response: Considerations for children and adults with disabilities

UNICEF
April 2020

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A guidance note on considerations for children and adults with disabilities in the COVID-19 response. The guidance describes what we need to know about the situation of persons with disabilities in COVID-19 response, and what we need to do in five key points: Limit human to human transmission and protect individuals from exposure; minimise morbidity and mortality; prevent and address the secondary impact of the outbreak- minimise the human consequences of the outbreak; enhance risk reduction and in-country preparedness including coordination; inclusion in UNICEF operations

Putting equality, inclusion and rights at the centre of a COVID-19 water, sanitation and hygiene response

NATH, Priya
GOSLING, Louisa
April 2020

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Issues of gender inequality and of vulnerability of marginalised people (those with chronic health issues and those living with disabilities) in the context of WASH and emergencies are highlighted.

Ways in which responses to the COVID-19 emergency can mitigate both existing and new vulnerabilities are proposed. A list of "dos and don'ts" is provided.

How to Cope With Being Short Of Breath

April 2020

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People with lung problems often feel short of breath. Many daily tasks can make you breathless, such as walking, getting dressed or doing jobs around the house. Being breathless can make you panic or feel frightened. When you learn how to control your breathing these feelings will not trouble you as much and you will be able to do more. When you are breathless, do not panic. Your breathing will settle.
 

Inclusive Governance sector guiding note on COVID-19

April 2020

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Humanity & Inclusion inclusive governance approach fits in with the governments (national, regional and local) context, governments are in charge of the response to the crisis. In these types of contexts, humanitarian actors do not have the leadership and mandate to make decisions. Governments are creating policies in response to Covid-19 and must include persons with disabilities as equal citizens within their response frameworks. 

Key messages :

  • DO NO HARM: Protect yourself and your family, staff, partners and of course the beneficiaries.
  • Work closely with other stakeholders and ensure coordination in the response is happening at all levels
  • Follow HI’s guidelines and the guidance from the national and local authorities regarding COVID 19 at all times. 

English pages 1-7 and français ci-dessous pages 7-13.

Access and humanitarian protection: Lessons from restricted operational contexts and their application to the COVID-19 operational environment

April 2020

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On 22 April, the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC), PHAP, and the Global Protection Cluster (GPC) organized the first of a series of webinars on access and humanitarian protection. The event provided an overview of the key terms, concepts, interlinkages, and dilemmas of protection and access in armed conflict, disaster, and health emergencies. What are the main protection concerns particular to hard-to-reach areas? What challenges do protection actors face in terms of access? Are maintaining access and protection priorities at cross purposes or can they help reinforce each other? This introduction was followed by a discussion with protection experts, exploring the ways in which existing lessons from protection programming in hard-to-reach areas can be applied to protection operations in the context of the COVID-19 outbreak.

 

The webinar recording and it's transcript are available

Syria Protection Cluster (Turkey): Brief guidance note - A disability-inclusive COVID-19 response

United Nations Office of the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNHCR)
April 2020

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Recent evidence suggests that the individual prevalence rate of persons with disabilities living in Syria, aged 12 years and above is 27%. This brief guidance note covers: Risks faced by persons with disabilities in the COVID-19 outbreak; Protection risks for specific groups of persons with disabilities during the COVID-19 outbreak; Upholding the rights of persons with disabilities in relation to the COVID-19 response; and Recommendations: Inclusion in the COVID-19 response 

Interim Guidance: Scaling-up COVID-19 outbreak readiness and response operations in humanitarian situations. Including camps and camp-like settings Version 1.1

IFRC
IOM
UNHCR
WHO
April 2020

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It is of extreme importance from a protection, human-rights and public health perspectives, that people affected by humanitarian crises are included in all COVID-19 outbreak readiness and response strategies, plan and operations. There is a strong public health rationale to extend all measures to everyone, regardless of status and ensuring inclusiveness. This Interim Guidance addresses specific needs and considerations required in humanitarian situations, including camps and camp-like settings and the surrounding host communities, in scaling-up readiness and response operations for the COVID-19 outbreak through effective multi-sectoral partnership

COVID-19 Resources - ICVA

ICVA
2020

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This page has a collection of guidelines, tools, statements, papers and useful links which are relevant to the current COVID-19 pandemic.

  • General Information
  • Humanitarian Coordination
  • Forced Migration
  • Civil Society space
  • Communications and Community Engagement
  • Inclusion and Diversity
  • Funding
  • Statements and commentary
  • Learning resources

Responding to Coronavirus: Resources and Support

The British Psychological Society
2020

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Some psychology tips, advice and links to articles that you might find helpful in dealing with the effects of the coronavirus pandemic. Resources both for the public and for professionals are listed.

COVID-19 and Humanitarian Crisis

2020

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A COVID-19 Humanitarian platform to gather, curate, analyze, interpret and disseminate COVID-19-specific and -sensitive interventions that are being implemented in a variety of humanitarian settings.

The goal is to facilitate the sharing of context-specific field experiences about how humanitarian programs are responding to and being adapted to the COVID-19 pandemic. This website will host both technical guidelines as well as operational field experiences from humanitarian actors in different settings.

BMJ's Coronavirus (covid-19) Hub

The BMJ
2020

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BMJ's covid-19 hub supports health professionals and researchers with practical guidance, online CPD courses, as well as the latest news, comment, and research from BMJ. The content is free and updated daily.

Somalia Disability Inclusive CCCM tip sheet

Humanity & Inclusion
April 2020

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This tip sheet provides an overview of the factors that may put persons with disabilities at heightened risk in the COVID-19 pandemic and response in humanitarian settings; and proposes actions to address these risks within the COVID Camp Coordination & Management response. 

Somalia Disability Inclusive COVID-19 WASH tip sheet

Humanity & Inclusion
April 2020

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This tip sheet provides an overview of the factors that may put persons with disabilities at heightened risk in the COVID-19 pandemic and response in humanitarian settings; and proposes actions to address these risks within the COVID WASH response.

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