The use of telemedicine, or remote clinical consultations, was limited in most OECD countries before the COVID‑19 pandemic, held back by regulatory barriers and hesitancy from patients and providers. In early 2020, as COVID‑19 massively disrupted in-person care, governments moved quickly to promote the use of telemedicine. The number of teleconsultations skyrocketed, playing a vital role in maintaining access to care, but only partly offsetting reductions in in-person care.
iza.org (Sept 2022) This paper provides an overview on the income support measures for non-covered workers implemented in response to the COVID-19 crisis, describing the collection of measures and policies in place in each selected country. This document provides a comparative overview of the different measures implemented in the context of the crisis, considering their design and evolution across the course of the crisis. In sum, there has been a worldwide wave of income transfers to support those hit hard by the pandemic.
worldbank.org (2022) Is Coronavirus (Covid-19) a “game changer” for cash transfers? This tantalizing question has animated a large body of recent literature and over 60 virtual panels. This paper offers some clues to address the question by bringing together data, evaluations and practical experiences generated over the course of the pandemic.
blogs.worldbank.org (13.07.2022) Over the past 30 months we have been carefully tracking countries’ unprecedented social protection responses to Covid-19. But what are we learning from such wealth of experiences? A new paper – Cash Transfers in Pandemic Times: Evidence, Practices, and Implications from the Largest Scale Up in History – combines analysis of large datasets with a review of about 300 pandemic papers, evaluations, and practical experiences while focusing on a particular form of social protection – cash transfers.
Asian Development Bank (June 2022) The report, part of a GIZ-ADB collaboration, reviews trends in social protection and recent pandemic responses. It discusses how artificial intelligence (AI) tools can fit into the social protection delivery chain. It reviews the functioning of the delivery chain during the pandemic to identify gaps in social protection systems along with emerging solutions that draw on digital technology. The report includes four case studies and suggests steps policymakers could take to foster an enabling environment for the use of AI in social protection.
Center for Global Development (09.06.2022) Does channeling government-to-person (G2P) payments through bank accounts encourage financial inclusion and use? This paper explores the factors that have driven the adoption of digital payments in India by beneficiaries of PMGKY, the large-scale COVID-19 relief program launched in May 2020. India’s 2013 move to pay social benefits through direct transfers into bank accounts significantly increased account ownership, but uptake of digital payments has been slower, although it has accelerated more recently through smartphone-based apps.
ZEF Discussion Paper (2022) This paper examines whether social protection – in the form of existing social assistance programmes – affects measures of household well-being such as poverty, food security and costly risk-coping behaviour during the COVID-19 pandemic. Using primary data from nationally representative, in-person surveys in Kenya allows the exploration of the impacts of major social assistance programmes. Our analysis employs the doubly robust difference-in-differences approach to estimate the impacts of social assistance programmes on common measures of household welfare.
International Policy Centre for Inclusive Growth (IPC-IG) (April 2022) This Policy Research Brief analyses how digitalisation can facilitate rural populations’ access to effective and adequate social protection and economic inclusion in Latin America and the Caribbean. It investigates the region’s social protection response to COVID-19 and highlights three good practices in providing digitalised social protection to vulnerable rural populations during the crisis.
worldbank.org (10.02.2022) The COVID-19 pandemic exacerbated poverty and threatened livelihoods in Liberia. The need to respond to this challenge spurred the expansion and digitization of the government’s ongoing cash transfer program. The Liberia Social Safety Nets Project launched the government’s first-ever urban cash transfer program. It provided emergency cash transfers for close to 15,000 households living in vulnerable communities in the Greater Monrovia area, which had recorded the highest number of COVID-19 cases in Liberia.
Economic Research Forum (ERF) (February 2022) This policy brief assesses the impact of COVID-19 on Middle East and North Africa (MENA) labor markets through June 2021. We use data from the four waves of the ERF COVID-19 MENA monitor household surveys, spanning November 2020, February 2021, April 2021, and June 2021. We focus on Egypt, Jordan, Morocco and Tunisia and developments between February 2021 and June 2021.