Care in times of the pandemic

Impact of the travel restrictions caused by the Corona pandemic on affected families in Germany and their carers from Eastern Europe

Integration Department

Project head: Dr. Niklas HarderProf. Dr. Magdalena Nowicka

Project team members: Mathis Herpell

Running time May 2020 until June 2022
Status Completed project

Households in Germany are often assisted in the care of elderly relatives by foreign, especially Eastern European, migrants. The caregivers often work in a transnational rotation system, i.e. they alternate with another caregiver in a certain rhythm and commute between Germany and their country of origin. However, the Corona pandemic and the measures associated with it, such as the temporary closure of the border, pose a major challenge to ensuring home-based care arrangements. The study aims to examine how this unprecedented crisis situation is dealt with and the effects on the affected families in Germany and the caregivers. In addition, there is a focus on recording possible (system-related) changes in care (arrangements). The following questions are of particular interest:

Situation of affected households in Germany:

  • Organisation of care before the pandemic
  • Influence of the (temporary) border closure on the care constellation
  • Dealing with epidemiological risks
  • Future care arrangements

Situation of caregivers and their households:

  • Information on the care constellation and work situation
  • Dealing with the (temporary) border closure
  • Influence of the (temporary) border closure on the working and living situation of carers in Germany
  • Effects of the situation on the caregivers' households
  • Future plans

In addition to the families affected and the carers, another focus is on recording how the Corona pandemic was dealt with and its consequences for the work of the placement agencies (loss of carers, new recruitment strategies, qualification offers, etc.).

Funding: Federal Ministry of Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth (Institutional funding)

Cooperation partner:

In cooperation with Dr Kamil Matuszczyk, University of Warsaw.

Supporting partners: Polish Social Council e.V., Utile.Care (portal for carers)