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      COVID-19 & informal settlements: is Stay Home safe?

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          Disproportional burden of COVID-19 and vulnerability to containment measures in informal settlements have been recognised, however, the role of poor housing conditions in propagating these remains neglected. Poor housing conditions will make it difficult to effectively implement social distancing measures. With increased time spent in cramped, dark and uncomfortable indoor environments, water and sanitation outside the home, and no outdoor space, higher exposure to existing health hazards and high levels of stress, with women and children most vulnerable, are anticipated. We reflect on these interconnections and recommend immediate measures and the long-term need for adequate housing for health and well-being.

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          Author and article information

          UCL Open: Environment Preprint
          UCL Press
          21 February 2021
          [1 ] UCL Institute for Environmental Design and Engineering, Bartlett School for Energy, Environment and Resources, University College London
          [2 ] Population, Policy and Practice, UCL Great Ormond Street Institute of Child Health, University College London
          [3 ] Department of Epidemiology, Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University
          [4 ] Engineering for International Development Centre; Civil, Environmental and Geomatic Engineering, University College London
          [5 ] Aceso Global Health Consultants Ltd

          This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY) 4.0, which permits unrestricted use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

          NA NA

          Data sharing not applicable to this article as no datasets were generated or analysed during the current study.

          Urban development, Public health

          COVID-19, housing, informal settlements, health, vulnerability, Sustainability in architecture and the built environment, Health, Sanitation, health, and the environment


          Decision date (UK): 09/03/2020

          Handling Editor: Dr Sonja Ayeb-Karlsson

          The article has been revised, this article remains a preprint article and peer-review has not been completed. It is under consideration following submission to UCL Open: Environment Preprint for open peer review.

          2021-03-09 16:23 UTC

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