1.5 million children worldwide have lost a parent or other guardian to COVID-19

WEDNESDAY July 21, 2021 (HealthDay News)

In another finding that illustrates the tragic toll the pandemic has taken on families around the world, a new study shows 1.5 million children have lost a parent, grandparent or other guardian to COVID- 19.

“For two deaths from COVID-19 worldwide, one child is left behind in the face of the death of a parent or caregiver. As of April 30, 2021, these 1.5 million children had become the consequence neglected tragedy of the 3 million deaths from COVID-19 worldwide, and that number will only increase as the pandemic progresses, ”said Susan Hillis, study co-author of the team United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention COVID-19 response.

To reach this conclusion, the researchers analyzed data from 21 countries and extrapolated these results to produce global estimates. They noted that their results probably underestimate the actual numbers.

The study was published on July 20 in The Lancet.

“Our findings underscore the urgent need to put these children first and invest in evidence-based programs and services to protect and support them now, and continue to support them for many years to come. because the orphanage is not going away, ”Hillis said. said in a press release.

Children who have lost a parent or other guardian are at risk of having significant short- and long-term harmful effects on their health, safety and well-being, such as an increased risk of illness, physical violence, of sexual violence and teenage pregnancy, researchers say. warned.

Study author Lucie Cluver said, “We have strong evidence from HIV and Ebola to guide solutions. We need to help extended families or foster families care for children, with cost-effective economic strengthening, parenting programs and school access. Cluver is a professor at the University of Oxford in the UK and at the University of Cape Town in South Africa.

“We need to immunize caregivers – especially grandparents. And we have to react quickly, because every 12 seconds a child loses his caregiver to COVID-19, ”said Cluver.

The countries with the highest rates of children losing their primary guardian (custodial parent or grandparent) are: Peru (1 child per 100, just under 99,000 children), South Africa (5 children per 1,000 – almost 95,000 children), Mexico (3 children per 1,000 – over 141,000 children), Brazil (2 children per 1,000 – 130,000 children), Colombia (2 children per 1,000 – almost 33,300 children), Iran (> 1 child per 1,000 – just under 41,000 children), United States (> 1 child per 1,000 – nearly 114,000 children) and the Russian Federation (1 child per 1 000 – nearly 30,000 children).

In India, the number of newly orphaned children rose from around 5,100 in March 2021 to more than 43,000 in April 2021, an 8.5-fold increase, according to the study’s authors.

“The hidden orphanage pandemic is a global emergency,” said lead study co-author Seth Flaxman of Imperial College London, “and we can hardly afford to wait until tomorrow to act.” .

More information

The United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has more information on COVID-19[feminine.

LA SOURCE: La Lancette, communiqué de presse, 20 juillet 2021

Robert Preidt

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