The Impact of COVID-19 on older persons

United Nations, Mayo 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic is causing untold fear and suffering for older people across the world. As of 26 April, the virus itself has already taken the lives of some 193,710 people, and fatality rates for those over 80 years of age is five times the global average. As the virus spreads rapidly to developing countries, likely overwhelming health and social protection systems, the mortality rate for older persons could climb even higher.

Less visible but no less worrisome are the broader effects: health care denied for conditions unrelated to COVID-19; neglect and abuse in institutions and care facilities; an increase in poverty and unemployment; the dramatic impact on well-being and mental health; and the trauma of stigma and discrimination.

Ideal Nursing Homes: Individual Rooms, Better Staffing, More Accountability

NPR, 21/05/2020

Nursing homes were not on our minds much before the COVID-19 pandemic. Then their residents began dying by the thousands.

While there are no definitive figures, nursing home residents and staff appear to account for about one-third of the roughly 90,000 COVID-19 related deaths in the U.S., according to The New York Times. Those figures may be low because some states do not report such figures and the CDC is just beginning to collect them.

The stunning death toll has brought scrutiny to an industry that many believe is due for an overhaul. Questions about the way it’s paid for, staffing levels, adequate training for staff, effective regulations and oversight all are raging as states battle to control the ravages of the pandemic.

The effects of the coronavirus crisis on workers

Laura Gardiner & Hannah Slaughter, Resolution Foundation, 16/05/2020

The coronavirus crisis has hit workers hard: the numbers of those furloughed and those newly claiming Universal Credit illustrates the scale. To date, however, we have had very limited information about which types of people have been most affected. In this spotlight, we begin to fill this gap with flash findings from the Resolution Foundation’s new coronavirus survey. To begin, we find that nearly one-third of lower-paid employees have lost jobs or been furloughed, compared to less than one-in-ten top earners, with these experiences also more common among atypical employees.

Why universal basic income could help us fight the next wave of economic shocks

John Harris, The Guardian, 03/05/2020

Until six weeks ago many hung on to the vague idea that people’s relationship with work divided them along binary lines: into winners and precarious losers; “aspirational” types and those who were dependent on the state; and those who had either adjusted to globalisation or were the casualties of it.

But if any of this was ever true, the coronavirus crisis has surely consigned most of it to history. Insecurity is now at the heart of tens of millions of lives. Put another way, the “precariat” has suddenly expanded to denote a potentially universal condition.