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Science, Technology
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Issue 74: Processing grief in a time of pandemic

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Every week, HEADlines brings you the latest news, stories and commentaries in education and healthcare. This week, get insights on the latest developments in healthcare. image Processing grief in a time of pandemic The number of deaths from the COVID-19 pandemic continues to climb globally, reaching almost 4.15 million people at last count. Beyond just a statistic, each death represents the loss of someone’s loved one and is taking a toll on surviving individuals. What makes grief so difficult during the pandemic is that people have been stripped of the usual rituals of processing their loss. There is no last touch or hug, nor a physical memorial service that would allow people to come together collectively to comfort each other. It is, in many ways, a lonely journey. For a sizeable number of bereaved individuals, their anguish does not diminish and can render life almost unbearable. A July 2020 study estimates that every death from COVID-19 in the US will leave approximately nine close relatives bereaved, of which 5-10% may experience what is known as prolonged grief disorder. The impact on children is even greater. According to a new study published in The Lancet, a child loses a caregiver to COVID-19 every 12 seconds. An estimated 1.5 million children globally experienced the death of a parent, grandparent or caregiver due to COVID-19, which is creating a ‘hidden pandemic of orphanhood’. At times like these, we can be more supportive in helping those affected better cope with their grief. Allowing people to acknowledge and express their grief, and providing an environment where people can feel safe emotionally and physically, will go a long way in aiding their healing journey. Healthcare in the Spotlight The Wall Street Journal: Covid-19 pill race heats up as Japanese firm vies with Pfizer, Merck (audio only) A once-a-day pill designed by a Japanese company is targeting to neutralise the coronavirus within a week. The Conversation: The Lambda variant: is it more infectious, and can it escape vaccines? A virologist explains Preliminary evidence suggests Lambda has an easier time infecting our cells and is a bit better at dodging our immune systems. But vaccines should still do a good job against it. Nature: COVID and the brain: researchers zero in on how damage occurs Growing evidence suggests that the coronavirus causes ‘brain fog’ and other neurological symptoms through multiple mechanisms. DW: German flood rescue could spread coronavirus, officials say The health crises following natural disasters are enormous, and it is exacerbated by the risk of COVID-19 spreading further. The New York Times: See how wildfire smoke spread across America Air quality was in the unhealthy range due to wildfire smoke. The New York Times built an interactive map to show how smoke from fires travelled across North America to reach the East Coast. Healthline: A caregiver’s guide to understanding Dementia With preparation and planning, one can better handle the changes, progression, and setbacks common in caring for someone with dementia. Photo credit: Artyom Kabajev on Unsplash South China Morning Post (Commentary): How Hong Kong can apply traditional Chinese medicine in fight against chronic disease TCM practitioners can contribute to better health management by customising health recommendations according to an individual’s constitution and needs. Healthbytes What to know about anticipatory anxiety Source: Medical News Today While it is natural to wonder or stress about future events and situations, excessive worry can negatively impact a person’s everyday life and function. Find out more about anticipatory anxiety and what people can do to cope with it. Upcoming Webinars image Chinese Medicine Webinar Series by UTAR (Malaysia) Want to know more about Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and how it can benefit your health? Tune in to the monthly webinar series by TCM lecturers at Universiti Tunku Abdul Rahman (UTAR), Malaysia. In the month of August, they will be covering the topics “Day vs Health” and “Awareness, Treatment and Protection of Cervical Spondylosis”. Click here to register. *Please note that the UTAR webinar will be conducted in Mandarin.

About

Leaders and changemakers of today face unique and complex challenges. The HEAD Foundation Digest features insights and opinions from those in the know addressing a wide range of pertinent issues that factor in a society’s development. 

Informed opinions can inspire healthy discussions and open up our imagination to new possibilities. Interested in contributing? Write to us at info@headfoundation

Stay updated on our latest announcements on events and publications

About

Leaders and changemakers of today face unique and complex challenges. The HEAD Foundation Digest features insights and opinions from those in the know addressing a wide range of pertinent issues that factor in a society’s development. 

Informed opinions can inspire healthy discussions and open up our imagination to new possibilities. Interested in contributing? Write to us at info@headfoundation

Stay updated on our latest announcements on events and publications

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Stay updated on all the latest news and events

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