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Int J Equity Health ; 20(1): 204, 2021 09 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1412693


BACKGROUND: People with disabilities (PwD) have been facing multiple health, social, and economic disparities during the COVID-19 pandemic, stemming from structural disparities experienced for long time. This paper aims to present the PREparedness, RESponse and SySTemic transformation (PRE-RE-SyST): a model for a disability-inclusive pandemic responses and systematic disparities reduction. METHODS: Scoping review with a thematic analysis was conducted on the literature published up to mid-September 2020, equating to the initial stages of the COVID-19 pandemic. Seven scientific databases and three preprint databases were searched to identify empirical or perspective papers addressing health and socio-economic disparities experienced by PwD as well as reporting actions to address them. Snowballing searches and experts' consultation were also conducted. Two independent reviewers made eligibility decisions and performed data extractions on any action or recommended action to address disparities. A thematic analysis was then used for the model construction, informed by a systems-thinking approach (i.e., the Iceberg Model). RESULTS: From 1027 unique references, 84 were included in the final analysis. The PRE-RE-SyST model articulates a four-level strategic action to: 1) Respond to prevent or reduce disability disparities during a pandemic crisis; 2) Prepare ahead for pandemic and other crises responses; 3) Design systems and policies for a structural disability-inclusiveness; and 4) Transform society's cultural assumptions about disability. 'Simple rules' and literature-based examples on how these strategies can be deployed are provided. CONCLUSION: The PRE-RE-SyST model articulates main strategies, 'simple rules' and possible means whereby public health authorities, policy-makers, and other stakeholders can address disability disparities in pandemic crises, and beyond. Beyond immediate pandemic responses, disability-inclusiveness is needed to develop everyday equity-oriented policies and practices that can transform societies towards greater resiliency, as a whole, to pandemic and other health and social emergencies.

COVID-19 , Disabled Persons , Pandemics , Public Health Practice , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Health Status Disparities , Humans , Models, Organizational , Pandemics/prevention & control
Work ; 67(1): 37-46, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1007026


BACKGROUND: The novel coronavirus (COVID-19) that emerged in late 2019, and later become a global pandemic, has unleashed an almost unprecedented global public health and economic crisis. OBJECTIVE: In this perspective, we examine the effects of COVID-19 and identify a likely 'new normal' in terms of challenges and opportunities within the fields of disability, telework, and rehabilitation. METHODS: We use a systems thinking lens informed by recent empirical evidence and peer-reviewed qualitative accounts regarding the pandemic to identify emerging challenges, and pinpoint opportunities related to health and changing employment infrastructure of people with disabilities and rehabilitation professionals. RESULTS: From our interpretation, the key leverage points or opportunities include: (1) developing disability-inclusive public health responses and emergency preparedness; (2) enabling employment and telework opportunities for people with disabilities; (3) addressing the new requirements in rehabilitation service provision, including participating as essential team members in the care of people with infectious diseases such as COVID-19; (4) embracing the added emphasis on, and capacity for, telehealth; and (5) developing greater resilience, distance learning, and employability among the rehabilitation workforce. CONCLUSIONS: The COVID-19 pandemic has become increasingly challenging to the lives of people with disabilities and rehabilitation professionals; however, key challenges can be minimized and opportunities can be capitalized upon in order to 'build back better' after COVID-19.

Coronavirus Infections/economics , Disabled Persons/rehabilitation , Economic Recession , Employment/organization & administration , Pandemics/economics , Pneumonia, Viral/economics , Workplace/organization & administration , Betacoronavirus , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Education, Distance , Humans , Organizational Innovation , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Rehabilitation Research , SARS-CoV-2 , Systems Analysis , Telecommunications/organization & administration , Telemedicine , Workforce/trends