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Impact of COVID-19 on the health and psychosocial status of vulnerable older adults: study protocol for an observational study
BMC Public Health, Volume: 20, Issue: 1
Swansea University Author: Vanessa Burholt
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© The Author(s). 2020 Open Access This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International LicenseDownload (596.8KB)
DOI (Published version): 10.1186/s12889-020-09900-1
BackgroundMany countries around the world have adopted social distancing as one of the public health measures to reduce COVID-19 transmissions in the community. Such measures could have negative effects on the mental health of the population. The aims of this study are to (1) track the impact of COV...
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BackgroundMany countries around the world have adopted social distancing as one of the public health measures to reduce COVID-19 transmissions in the community. Such measures could have negative effects on the mental health of the population. The aims of this study are to (1) track the impact of COVID-19 on self-reported mood, self-rated health, other health and psychosocial indicators, and health services utilization of people who have an interRAI assessment during the first year of COVID-19; (2) compare these indicators with the same indicators in people who had an interRAI assessment in the year before COVID-19; and (3) report these indicators publicly as soon as data analysis is completed every 3 months.MethodsinterRAI COVID-19 Study (iCoS) is an observational study on routinely collected national data using the interRAI Home Care and Contact Assessment, which are standardized geriatric assessment tools mandated for all people assessed for publicly funded home support services and aged residential care in New Zealand. Based on the 2018/19 figures, we estimated there are 36,000 interRAI assessments per annum. We will compare the four post-lockdown quarters (from 25th March 2020) with the respective pre-lockdown quarters. The primary outcomes are self-reported mood (feeling sad, depressed or hopeless: 0 = no, 1 = yes) and self-rated health (0 = excellent, 1 = good, 2 = fair, 3 = poor). We will also analyze sociodemographics, other secondary health and psychosocial indicators, and health services utilization. Descriptive statistics will be conducted for primary outcomes and other indicators for each of the eight quarters. We will compare the quarters using regression models adjusted for demographic characteristics using weights or additional variables. Key health and psychosocial indicators will be reported publicly as soon as data analysis is completed for each quarter in the 12-month post-lockdown period by using a data visualization tool.DiscussionThis rapid translation of routinely collected national interRAI data will provide a means to monitor the health and psychosocial well-being of vulnerable older New Zealanders. Insights from this study can be shared with other countries that use interRAI and prepare health and social services for similar epidemics/pandemics in the future.
Pandemic; Older adults; Health; Mental health; interRAI
Faculty of Medicine, Health and Life Sciences
Auckland Medical Research Foundation and Central Region Technical Advisory Services Limited provided funding for this study.