CLOSER Policy alert: COVID-19 Areas of Research Interest for the UK Parliament

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a mother helps her young daughter put on a face maskThere are many questions raised by the COVID-19 pandemic and its impacts that require research evidence to answer.

To help facilitate this, the Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology (POST) has published 20 COVID-19 Areas of Research Interest (ARIs) for the UK Parliament. These ARIs focus on the impacts of the global pandemic and range from economic recovery and growth, to surveillance and data collection, long-term mental health effects, education, vaccine development, and the NHS. Each ARI comes with a series of questions aiming to further break down each broad area.

Research questions of particular relevance to longitudinal population studies:

  • What data needs to be collected in order to understand the full economic, social and health impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak?
  • What role has the UK’s housing density had on transmission of the virus? How has housing quality affected people’s health during the COVID-19 outbreak?
  • How has the COVID-19 outbreak affected social inequalities and how will this change in the future? Which groups are more likely to have experienced loneliness or social isolation during the COVID-19 outbreak? Which groups have had greater caring responsibilities during the COVID-19 outbreak?
  • How has the COVID-19 outbreak affected economic inequalities and how will this change in the future? Which groups are more likely to have experienced loss of employment or income? Which groups are more likely to have been furloughed? Which groups are more likely to have been working reduced hours?
  • How has the COVID-19 outbreak affected health inequalities and how will this change in the future? Which groups are more likely to have caught the virus or have died from COVID-19? Which groups will experience long-term health effects from COVID-19? How has access to healthcare or treatment plans differed between groups during the COVID-19 outbreak?
  • What are mental health effects of COVID-19 for those who have survived it? What is the best way to measure long-term mental health effects?
  • What are the mental health effects of social distancing measures? Have some groups been at greater risk of poor mental health during the COVID-19 outbreak?
  • What has been the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak on those with pre-existing mental health conditions?
  • How has the COVID-19 outbreak affected levels of social isolation and loneliness? Which groups have been at greater risk of social and isolation and loneliness during this period?
  • What are long-term physical health effects of COVID-19 for those who have survived it? What is the best way to measure long-term physical health effects?
  • What are the long-term health effects for children born during the COVID-19 outbreak? What are the long-term health effects for infants reaching critical stages during the COVID-19 outbreak?

How can researchers use the ARIs?

  1. If you have evidence that partly or wholly answers one of the questions in the ARIs below (including evidence reviews): you can add information about the research and your contact details to the repository of existing and future COVID-19 research relevant to UK Parliament.
  2. If you are, or soon will be, carrying out research (including evidence reviews) in an area relating to any of the questions in the ARIs below but findings are not yet available: you can add information about future research projects, likely publication dates, and contact details to the repository of existing and future COVID-19 research relevant to UK Parliament. Once evidence is available, you can add that evidence to the repository at any time.
  3. If you are aware of existing or future research in an area relating to any of the questions in the ARIs below but are not involved in the research personally: you can add information about existing or future research to the repository of existing and future COVID-19 research relevant to UK Parliament.

Access the repository of existing and future COVID-19 research relevant to UK Parliament

Find out more about the COVID-19 Areas of Research Interest for UK Parliament


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