Gender, Health and the COVID-19 Pandemic

Measures to Build the Evidence of Need and Response for Women and Girls

The COVID-19 pandemic and resultant social lockdowns are likely creating some disproportionate burdens for women and girls. Women make up almost 70% of the health care workforce, largely on the frontlines of care, exposing them to a greater risk of infection. At the same time, their access to reproductive and maternal health care has been severely hampered. They are facing increased domestic care burdens in the wake of children being forced from schools and families present for more meals. Already contending with lower-paid jobs and lesser job opportunities, they now face even greater financial insecurity. And cross-nationally, there is an indication of escalating domestic violence against women and girls, as they are forced to remain at home at a time of increased household financial stress and social isolation.

Now is the time for the building of data to drive a more evidence-focused and targeted approach to prevention and care, and to that end, there are key areas of measurement that are needed. We have hand-selected, adapted, and developed evidence-based measures for surveys on COVID-19 and Gender. We have measures on a number of topics.

In addition, we also offer guidance on Protocol Recommendations for Conducting Phone-Based Surveys.

We will update our measures monthly and will make recommendations for the best evidence measures for the COVID-19 context. Register here as an EMERGE user for updates on COVID-19 and gender measures.

If you have any recommendations, comments, or questions regarding this work, please contact us at

If you plan to use any of these measures, also please contact us at, so we can follow-up with you regarding the utility and results of these measures in the field.

Guidance on conducting Surveys during the COVID-19 Pandemic