University of Oulu

Golubeva, E.; Emelyanova, A.; Kharkova, O.; Rautio, A.; Soloviev, A. Caregiving of Older Persons during the COVID-19 Pandemic in the Russian Arctic Province: Challenges and Practice. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19, 2775.

Caregiving of older persons during the COVID-19 pandemic in the Russian Arctic province : challenges and practice

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Author: Golubeva, Elena1; Emelyanova, Anastasia2; Kharkova, Olga3;
Organizations: 1Department of Social Work and Social Security, Northern (Arctic) Federal University, Northern Dvina Embankment, 17, 163002 Arkhangelsk, Russia
2Thule Institute, University of Oulu & University of the Arctic, Paavo Havaksen Tie 3, P.O. Box 7300, FI-90014 Oulu, Finland
3Department of Psychiatry and Clinical Psychology, Northern State Medical University, 51, Troitsky Avenue, 163061 Arkhangelsk, Russia
4Arctic Health, Faculty of Medicine, University of Oulu, P.O. Box 5000, FI-90014 Oulu, Finland
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 2.3 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute, 2022
Publish Date: 2022-05-23


Older people and their families were particularly affected during the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, but not much is known about the context of the Arctic regions of Russia. In this study, we identified the changes in family care before and during the pandemic using a questionnaire for the informal caregivers of older people. We investigated how and to what extent the pandemic has affected the relationships between caregiver and older person, and how the mental and physical health of older people and caregivers were affected by self-isolation in the Arkhangelsk region of Russia. The pandemic has changed the contribution of care from various actors: the share of care by charities, churches, and other aid agencies increased, while that of municipal services decreased. Sixteen percent of female and forty percent of male caregivers informed the study that COVID-19-related restrictions led to deterioration in the health of older people cared for at home. Family caregivers’ own health worsened, especially mental health: 28% of caregivers reported aggravated stress during the COVID-19 pandemic and expressed various fears. Our data show that the main resources in overcoming the period of self-isolation have been telephone communication, personal contact, reading/music, friends, as well as the help of social services and maintaining a positive attitude.

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Series: International journal of environmental research and public health
ISSN: 1661-7827
ISSN-E: 1660-4601
ISSN-L: 1661-7827
Volume: 19
Issue: 5
Article number: 2775
DOI: 10.3390/ijerph19052775
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 3124 Neurology and psychiatry
316 Nursing
Funding: This article is part of a project that has received funding from EC DG NEAR under grant agreement ENI/2017/387-477 Development of think tank functions of the Northern Dimension Institute. The materials have been collected also as part of the project “Indigenous and non-indigenous residents of the Nordic-Russian region: Best practices for equity in healthy ageing” (NORRUS-AGE) funded by the Nordic Council of Ministers (NCM).
Copyright information: © 2022 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (