Welcome to the EPA 2021 Interactive Programme
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Proposed by the EPA section on Women, Gender and Mental Health - Gender can significantly impact on the course of infection during a pandemic, but also it’s longterm sequelae. In the case of COVID-19, current worldwide statistics show more men than women dying of acute infection, while women are projected to suffer more than men from the health, economic and social consequences of the pandemic. Up to date research findings will be presented by the first speaker. Several studies to date have reported an increase in common mental health problems during the acute phase of the Covid-19 pandemic in all population groups with a more pronounced rise in women. Longer-term effects on mental health in people who have suffered from Covid-19 are as yet unknown. The second speaker will focus on the incidence of post-traumatic stress disorder in this group, reviewing up-to-date literature and presenting data from her research group on men and women who were treated as inpatients or at home. The third speaker will discuss evidence that domestic violence and related deaths of women increased during the Covid-19 lockdown periods. The barriers that social restrictions create towards identifying and supporting victims will be discussed and recommendations given to overcome them. Particularly difficult challenges are also encountered during a pandemic by mental health services which care for women with severe mental illness who are pregnant or have recently given birth. The 4th and 5th speaker will discuss which strategies that were rapidly adopted during the Covid-19 pandemic to meet these challenges in the inpatient, community and liaison setting, were successful.
W0034 - The Impact of Gender in the COVID-19 Pandemic
Data worldwide is pointing towards an increased mortality of men a from COVID-19, while infection rates are equal or higher in women. Immunological differences might play a role in this as well as differences in risk factors and co-morbidities. In addition, differences in exposure, testing, case definitions and access to healthcare might play a role. Differences in symptoms have been reported, as well as potential differences in therapeutic choices. Also, the phenomenon of “long COVID” with all its psychophysical consequences appears to be more common in women. In addition to the consequences of the acute infection, COVID-19 is significantly impacting economies, social systems and political priorities.
I will try to give a general overview of the current situation, starting from a medical standpoint and moving into the wider social consequences of this pandemic. I will highlight how the lack of attention to sex and gender can impact statistics, potential therapies and vaccines, livelihoods and the healthcare sector as a whole.
W0036 - Domestic Violence and Abuse and COVID-19
Introduction: In the United Kingdom(1) and internationally(2), help-seeking for domestic violence (DV) and domestic homicides have increased(3) during COVID-19 lockdown periods. Suspension and remote delivery of face-to-face clinical services, continuing healthcare and other support services limits opportunities for DV detection and disclosure.
Methods: This presentation will summarise changes in DV incidence and help-seeking during COVID-19, their impacts on health and wellbeing, and present guidance for clinicians assessing and supporting survivors.
Results: World Health Organisation recommendations to Listen, Inquire, Validate, Enhance safety and Support ('LIVES') survivors of DV remain the cornerstone of first-line support (4). Urgently-issued guidelines on safeguarding(5) and responding to DV during COVID-19(6) make a range of recommendations for clinicians supporting people experiencing DV.
Conclusions: DV is an important social determinant of physical and mental health, with a range of potential fatal and non-fatal consequences. Despite the constraints of healthcare during a pandemic, attention to patients' risk of DV and its consequences is a crucial part of bio-psycho-social assessment and management planning.
(1) Kelly, Morgan. Coronavirus: Domestic abuse calls up 25% since lockdown, charity says. 2020. https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-52157620
(2) Graham-Harrison, et al. Lockdowns around the world bring rise in domestic violence. 2020. https://www.theguardian.com/society/2020/mar/28/lockdowns-world-rise-domestic-violence
(3) Roesch, et al. Violence against women during covid-19 pandemic restrictions. BMJ 2020;369.
(4) WHO. Responding to intimate partner violence and sexual violence against women: WHO clinical and policy guidelines. 2013. https://apps.who.int/iris/bitstream/handle/10665/85240/9789241548595_eng.pdf;jsessionid=E19DCC3CDAB9BE390EE6F8360C6F1D7E?sequence=1
(5) RCGP. COVID-19 and Safeguarding. 2020. https://elearning.rcgp.org.uk/pluginfile.php/149180/mod_resource/content/2/COVID-19%20and%20Safeguarding%20%286%29.pdf
(6) IRISi. Guidance for General Practice teams responding to domestic abuse during telephone and video consultations. 2020. https://irisi.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/04/Guidance-for-General-Practice-Covid-19-FINAL.pdf
W0037 - Treating Pregnant and Postnatal Women with Severe Mental Illness and Their Infants on a Specialised Inpatient Unit During a Pandemic: What Are the Challenges and Lessons Learnt?
From the beginning of the pandemic, pregnant or postpartum women were considered particularly vulnerable.
In France, the vast majority of joint care for parents and infants facilities have seen their services closed or the number of people cared for greatly reduced to allow for social distancing to be respected.
This notion of social distancing is the antithesis of joint care work, the main objective of which is to support and care for the parent-infant bond by favoring social links
Services have had to take ownership of this new situation within a few days and develop new approaches, inventing ways of supporting and linking up at a distance.
This presentation will deal in detail with these changes and the solutions proposed, especially kind of home hospitalisations based on discussion groups, the development of programmes to support remote interactions, and also the development of work with fathers, who have been much more present than they usually are, due to the generalisation of teleworking.