New study to investigate impact of COVID-19 on children in CanadaOctober 7, 2022
The Children’s Health Policy Centre is part of a national team investigating how COVID-19 public health measures — such as school closures, distancing and masking — have affected children’s day-to-day lives, it was announced Oct. 6/22.
Charlotte Waddell, Centre director, and Nicole Catherine, Centre faculty member, are part of the team. “This is the first study to look at a large, representative sample of children both before and during the pandemic,” Waddell said. “So, we will able to really see how all kids were doing,” she added.
Kathy Georgiades from the Offord Centre for Child Studies at McMaster University is leading the research which is funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, to a sum of $3.1 million.
The team is partnering with Statistics Canada, the Public Health Agency of Canada, and Children’s Healthcare Canada to collect data on children’s physical, emotional, and social well-being, as well as their COVID-19 vaccination status. This study will provide the most robust evidence to date to inform new strategies to support children affected by the mental and physical health challenges stemming from the pandemic.
Close to 27,000 children between the ages of five and 21 will participate in the national study, which gets underway in January and wraps up in June 2023. Statistics Canada previously evaluated this same group, then aged one to 17 years, for the 2019 Canadian Health Survey on Children and Youth.
The results collected in 2019 give the research team solid pre-pandemic baseline data, which will allow them to assess the effects of the pandemic on the group’s well-being. Look to this website for ongoing updates as the study proceeds.