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J Public Health (Oxf) ; 44(4): e548-e556, 2022 Dec 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1621667


BACKGROUND: Many public health experts have claimed that elimination strategies of pandemic response allow 'normal social life' to resume. Recognizing that social connections and feelings of normality are important for public health, this study examines whether, and for whom, that goal is realized, and identifies obstacles that may inhibit its achievement. METHODS: Thematic analysis of narratives obtained via a qualitative cross-sectional survey of a community cohort in Aotearoa | New Zealand. RESULTS: A majority of participants reported that life after elimination was 'more or less the same' as before the pandemic. Some became more social. Nevertheless, a sizeable minority reported being less social, even many months after elimination. Key obstacles to social recovery included fears that the virus was circulating undetected and the enduring impact of lockdowns upon social relationships, personal habits and mental health. Within our sample, old age and underlying health conditions were both associated with a propensity to become less social. CONCLUSIONS: Elimination strategies can successfully allow 'normal social life' to resume. However, this outcome is not guaranteed. People may encounter difficulties with re-establishing social connections in Zero-COVID settings. Measures designed to overcome such obstacles should be an integral part of elimination strategies.

COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Humans , Cross-Sectional Studies , New Zealand/epidemiology , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Communicable Disease Control
BMJ Glob Health ; 6(6)2021 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1255587


Dealing with excess death in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic has thrown the question of a 'good or bad death' into sharp relief as countries across the globe have grappled with multiple peaks of cases and mortality; and communities mourn those lost. In the UK, these challenges have included the fact that mortality has adversely affected minority communities. Corpse disposal and social distancing guidelines do not allow a process of mourning in which families and communities can be involved in the dying process. This study aimed to examine the main concerns of faith and non-faith communities across the UK in relation to death in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic. The research team used rapid ethnographic methods to examine the adaptations to the dying process prior to hospital admission, during admission, during the disposal and release of the body, during funerals and mourning. The study revealed that communities were experiencing collective loss, were making necessary adaptations to rituals that surrounded death, dying and mourning and would benefit from clear and compassionate communication and consultation with authorities.

Attitude to Death , COVID-19 , Pandemics , COVID-19/mortality , Humans , Qualitative Research , United Kingdom/epidemiology
Studies in Indian Politics ; 8(2):294-297, 2020.
Article in English | Sage | ID: covidwho-964675