COVID-19 and women's health and wellbeing

The project brings together expertise from The George Institute for Global Health, UNSW Medicine including the School of Public Health and Community Medicine, and UNSW Arts and Social Sciences including the Gendered Violence Research Network. The project has three parts:

Analysing global COVID-19 statistics and national policies in a sex-disaggregated approach – in other words, studying men and women separately to account for their differences

Whilst confirmed cases of COVID-19 are distributed evenly between men and women, men account for about two-thirds of deaths. Biological and/or socio-cultural reasons may explain these differences. This has important implications for optimal clinical management and requires urgent investigation.

Mapping the responses of Australian frontline health and family violence services during COVID-19

There is evidence of increased Domestic and Family Violence (DFV) due to social isolation measures, causing vulnerable women to be confined at home in an abusive relationship. So far, there is limited insight into how health and allied services are adapting to the challenges of identifying these victims and assisting them during the COVID-19 pandemic.

A sex and gender-disaggregated survey of Australian health workers to understand how they have experienced stress, anxiety and depression during the pandemic

Working on the frontline of the pandemic takes a huge emotional and physical toll on health workers, who are exposed to grief, injury, stress, long hours and separation from family. Research is needed to build evidence-informed policies to support the wellbeing of health workers, specific to sex and gender.


Research team:

Scientia Professor Louise Chappell

Dr Janani Shanthosh

Dr Patricia Cullen

Dr Amanda Henry

Professor Mark Woodward

Professor Robyn Norton AO

Associate Professor Sanne Peters

Dr Cheryl Carcel

Dr Carinna Hockham

Dr Naomi Hammond

Dr Brett Abbenbroek

Professor Jan Breckenridge

Dr Meead Saberi

Associate Professor Karen Walker

Professor Rosemary Morgan

Ms Kelly Thompson


More information:

This project was selected for support from the UNSW Sydney COVID-19 Rapid Response Research scheme: