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Age Ageing ; 52(6)2023 Jun 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-20238635


OBJECTIVES: There is little research conducted to systematically synthesize the evidence on psychological interventions for social isolation and loneliness among older adults during medical pandemics. This systematic review aims to address this information gap and provides guidance for planning and implementing interventions to prevent and reduce loneliness and social isolation for older adults, especially during medical pandemics. METHODS: Four electronic databases (EMBASE, PsychoInfo, Medline and Web of Science) and grey literature from 1 January 2000 to 13 September 2022 were searched for eligible studies on loneliness and social isolation. Data extraction and methodological quality assessment on key study characteristics were conducted independently by two researchers. Both qualitative synthesis and meta-analysis were used. RESULTS: The initial search yielded 3,116 titles. Of the 215 full texts reviewed, 12 intervention articles targeting loneliness during the COVID-19 pandemic met the inclusion criteria. No studies were found concerning intervention with respect to social isolation. Overall, interventions targeting social skills and the elimination of negativities effectively alleviated the feelings of loneliness in the older population. However, they had only short-term effects. CONCLUSION: This review systematically summarised the key characteristics and the effectiveness of existing interventions addressing loneliness in older adults during the COVID-19 pandemic. Future interventions should focus on social skills and eliminating negativities and be tailored to the needs and characteristics of older people. Repeated larger-scale randomized controlled trials and long-term effectiveness evaluations on this topic are warranted.

COVID-19 , Loneliness , Humans , Aged , Loneliness/psychology , Pandemics , Psychosocial Intervention , COVID-19/epidemiology , Social Isolation/psychology
BMC Health Serv Res ; 23(1): 357, 2023 Apr 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2305182


OBJECTIVES: Using Andersen's model of health care seeking behavior, we examined the predisposing, enabling, and need factors associated with mental health service use (MHSU) during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic across Canada. METHODS: The sample included n = 45,542 participants in the 5 established regional cohorts of the Canadian Partnership for Tomorrow's Health (CanPath) and who responded to the CanPath COVID-19 health survey (May-December 2020), with complete data on MHSU. Multivariable logistic regression analyses were carried out to study MHSU as a function of predisposing, enabling, and need factors. Analyses were stratified by regional cohort. RESULTS: Among the need factors, individuals reporting moderate/severe symptoms of depression and anxiety and poorer self-rated mental health were more likely to report MHSU. Among the enabling factors, receipt of informational/financial/practical support was associated with increased MHSU. While income was not consistently associated with MHSU, reported decrease in income was marginally associated with reduced MHSU. Among the predisposing factors, identifying as female or other gender minority was associated with increased MHSU, as was the presence of past-year cannabis use. In contrast, older age and alcohol consumption were associated with reduced MHSU. CONCLUSION: Need factors were consistently associated with MHSU. Although income inequities in MHSU were not observed, changes such as reduced income during the pandemic may lead to barriers in accessing mental health services. Future research should focus on better identifying contextual enabling factors and policies that overcome financial barriers to MHSU.

COVID-19 , Mental Health Services , Humans , Female , Aged , Canada/epidemiology , Pandemics , COVID-19/epidemiology , Mental Health
Arch Public Health ; 80(1): 154, 2022 Jun 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1993384


BACKGROUND: Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)/Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) is a public health issue of global importance. To our knowledge, no previous meta-analysis documenting the prevalence, socio-demographic, and service use determinants associated with HIV/AIDS disclosure to infected children has been conducted. The present study aimed to determine the prevalence, socio-demographics and service use determinants associated with the disclosure of HIV/AIDS status to infected children. METHODS: Studies in English published between 01 January 1985 and 01 November 2021, and available on PubMed, Scopus, Web of Science, and Cochrane electronic databases were searched. After reviewing for study duplicates, the full-text of selected articles were assessed for eligibility using Population, Intervention, Comparator, Outcomes (PICO) criteria. We used fixed and random-effects meta-analysis models to estimate the pooled prevalence, pooled odds ratio (OR), and 95% confidence intervals. RESULTS: After article duplicates were excluded, assessments of abstracts were completed, and full-text papers evaluated, 37 studies were included in this meta-analysis. The prevalence of the disclosure of HIV status to children was measured to be 41% in this research. The odds that a child of 10 years and older is informed that they are HIV-positive is 3.01 time the odds that younger children are informed. Those children who had primary or lower schooling level were 2.41 times more likely to be informed of their HIV-positive status than children with higher levels of schooling. Children who had a non-biological parents were 3.17 times more likely to have been disclose being HIV-positive; social support (OR = 8.29, 95%CI = 2.34, 29.42), children who had higher levels of social supports were 8.29 times more likely to disclose HIV-positive; the primary educational level of caregivers (OR = 2.03, 95%CI = 1.43, 2.89), respondents who had caregivers with primary education level were 2.03 times more likely to disclose HIV-positive; antiretroviral treatment (ART) adherence (OR = 2.59, 95%CI = 1.96, 3.42), participants who adhered to ART were 2.59 times more likely to disclose HIV-positive and hospital follow-up (OR = 2.82, 95%CI = 1.85, 4.29), those who had hospital follow-up were 2.82 times more likely to disclose HIV-positive; were all significantly associated with the disclosure of HIV/AIDS status to infected children. CONCLUSION: Such data are of importance for healthcare pediatrics HIV care professionals. Facilitating HIV diagnosis and disclosure to the infected children and ensuring access to HIV treatment will likely prevent secondary HIV transmission. Healthcare professionals are expected to provide age-appropriate counseling services to this population.