Survey development and launch
In August, the Remember Rebuild team launched a survey exploring how COVID affected the four pillars of health equity in Saskatchewan: housing access, food security, mental health, and substance use. This innovative survey was developed by Suvadra Datta Gupta, James Dixon, and Nazeem Muhajarine, with feedback from our wider team of health experts. It draws upon validated survey questions in these key areas including questions previously asked by Statistics Canada and our partner Mental Health Research Canada. The survey deployment is being managed by Dr. Jessica McCutcheon, Associate Director for the Canadian Hub for Applied Social Research. We have had a great response so far and have arranged with CHASR to have the survey included in the upcoming omnibus survey of Saskatchewan residents.
This survey builds upon the work and research of SPHERU on COVID-19, including the Social Contours project—a general overview of the impacts of COVID–and an exploration of mental health effects on children and youth (See Us, Hear Us). The survey expands this solid base of data by exploring key health equity issues to assess if—and how—the pandemic affected more vulnerable populations in Saskatchewan. This will be completed by a qualitative analysis that seeks to identify how service providers responded to new pandemic pressures and what vulnerable communities. Our goal is to analyze this data in tandem and, working with community partners, propose policy changes that will address health inequities and proactively protect residents of Saskatchewan before the next pandemic or disaster.