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Household level health and socio-economic vulnerabilities and the COVID-19 crisis: An analysis from the UK

University of St. Andrews
United Kingdom
Type of Study
Cross-sectional, nationally representative study
Multiple household-level indicators and principal component analysis
Key Focus of Study
Objectives: To investigate how COVID-19-related health and socio-economic vulnerabilities occur at the household level, and how they are distributed across household types and geographical areas in the United Kingdom. Main outcome measures: Using multiple household-level indicators and principal components analysis, we derive summary measures representing different dimensions of household vulnerabilities critical during the COVID-19 epidemic: health, employment, housing, financial and digital. Results: Our analysis highlights four key findings. First, although COVID-19 health risks are concentrated in retirement-age households, a substantial proportion of working age households also face these risks. Second, different types of households exhibit different vulnerabilities, with working-age households more likely to face financial, housing and employment precarities, and retirement-age households health and digital vulnerabilities. Third, there are area-level differences in the distribution of household-level -vulnerabilities across England and the constituent countries of the United Kingdom. Fourth, in many households, different dimensions of vulnerabilities intersect; this is especially prevalent among working-age households. Conclusions: The findings imply that the short- and long-term consequences of the COVID-19 crisis are likely to significantly vary by household type. Policy measures that aim to mitigate the health and socio-economic consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic should consider how vulnerabilities cluster together across different household types, and how these may exacerbate already existing inequalities.
Key Stakeholders
Sample size
19400 households
Date data expected
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