COVID-Ready Communication Playbook for Health Professionals

The team at VitalTalk crowdsourced this playbook to provide some practical advice to health care professionals on how to talk to their patients about some difficult topics related to COVID-19.

Building on their experience studying and teaching communication they’ve drawn on their networks to crowdsource the challenges and match them with advice from some of the best clinicians they know.

Source: COVID-Ready Communication Playbook for Health Professionals

    Questions and Answers about Violence against Women and COVID-19

    This page offers health workers as well as the general public answers to questions about violence against women in the context of COVID-19.

    The questions include:

    Source: Questions and Answers about Violence against Women and COVID-19

      Questions and Answers about Breastfeeding and COVID-19

      This page offers answers to questions about breastfeeding issues and COVID-19.

      The questions include:

      Source: Questions and Answers about Breastfeeding and COVID-19

        Unite Healthy Families: COVID-19

        Unite Healthy Families: COVID-19 is a collection of free digital guides designed to support families with limited English proficiency.  The guides feature:

        • Simplified text written in English and Spanish based on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and World Health Organization guidelines;
        • Narrations in 20+ languages by native-language speakers, including Spanish, Chinese, Vietnamese, Korean, Tagalog, Russian, Arabic, French Creole, Portuguese, French, Cantonese, Mandarin, Polish, Japanese, Italian, German, Farsi, Hindi, Gujarati, Urdu;
        • Culturally responsive messages and diverse images that offer familiarity and enhance understanding of the text.

        Source: Unite Healthy Families: COVID-19

        • Michael McGuffee

        Considerations and Principles for Shielding People at High Risk of Severe Outcomes from COVID-19

        This brief considers the rationale for shielding individuals at high risk of severe disease or death from COVID-19 in low and middle-income countries.

        It provides an overview of proposed approaches to shielding, discusses the categories of individuals who may be identified for shielding, and outlines the likely difficulties of these measures and ways to mitigate them. It is noted that the authors are not aware of any precedent for targeted shielding of specific groups in low- and middle-income countries during this or any other outbreak. As such, shielding as an approach is untested.

        The authors attempt to provide considerations regarding the feasibility and challenges of this approach, particularly in low- and middle-income settings. Decisions on shielding, they write, will need to pay particular attention to the local socio-economic context, be made in collaboration with local actors, and be continually adapted in light of emerging evidence about the approach’s effectiveness, the characteristics of the COVID-19 and the trajectories of the outbreaks.

        Source: Considerations and Principles for Shielding People at High Risk of Severe Outcomes from COVID-19

          COVID-19 Online Training

          The World Health Organization (WHO) has published a series of courses and exercises to help educate the general public about the novel coronavirus.

          Source: COVID-19 Online Training

            My Hero is You, How Kids can Fight COVID-19!

            This is a new story book that aims to help children understand and come to terms with COVID-19 has been produced by a collaboration of more than 50 organizations working in the humanitarian sector, including the World Health Organization, the United Nations Children’s Fund, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies and Save the Children.

            With the help of a fantasy creature, Ario, “My Hero is You, How kids can fight COVID-19!” explains how children can protect themselves, their families and friends from coronavirus and how to manage difficult emotions when confronted with a new and rapidly changing reality.

            The book – aimed primarily at children aged 6-11 years old – is a project of the Inter-Agency Standing Committee Reference Group on Mental Health and Psychosocial Support in Emergency Settings, a unique collaboration of United Nations agencies, national and international nongovernmental organizations and international agencies providing mental health and psychosocial support in emergency settings.

            During the early stages of the project, more than 1700 children, parents, caregivers and teachers from around the world shared how they were coping with the COVID-19 pandemic. The input was invaluable to script writer and illustrator Helen Patuck and the project team in making sure that the story and its messages resonated with children from different backgrounds and continents.

            In order to reach as many children as possible, the book has been widely translated into more than 30 languages. It is being released as both an online product and audio book. All languages are available in PDF form at the link below.

            Source: My Hero is You, How Kids can Fight COVID-19!

            COVID-19 and Violence against Women

            Violence against women remains a major threat to global public health and women’s health during emergencies. It is the most common form of violence.

            Violence against women tends to increase during every type of emergency, including epidemics. Older women and women with disabilities are likely to have additional risks and needs. Women who are displaced, refugees, and living in conflict-affected areas are particularly vulnerable. As distancing measures are put in place and people are encouraged to stay at home, the risk of intimate partner violence is likely to increase.

            Although the COVID-19 pandemic has placed an immense burden on health systems, including frontline health workers, there are things that can help mitigate the effects of violence on women and children.

            Source (English): COVID-19 and violence against women

            Source (Français): COVID-19 et violence à l’égard des femmes

            Source (Pyccкий): COVID-19 и насилие в отношении женщин

            Source (中文): COVID-19 和暴力侵害妇女行为

            Rights in the Time of COVID-19: Lessons from HIV for an effective, community-led response

            UNAIDS is calling on countries to adopt a human rights-based approach in responding to the global outbreak of COVID-19 that puts communities at the centre and respects the rights and dignity of all. To help guide governments, communities and other stakeholders in planning and implementing measures to contain the pandemic,

            This approach draws on key lessons from the response to the HIV epidemic.

            The new guidance from UNAIDS is grounded in international human rights law and obligations and makes it clear that responding to an epidemic is not a question of balancing public health and human rights but rather that a successful and effective response requires us to adhere to human rights principles. The guidance has been developed by a group of international experts from communities, the public health arena, academia and the United Nations.

            This guidance has an accompanying infographic.


              WHO Daily Situation Reports

              Daily coronavirus disease (COVID-19) situation reports include global case counts in the last 24 hours and other surveillance data. The reports also include highlights of important developments as well as WHO preparedness and response actions.

              Source: WHO Daily Situation Reports