Congregate Living and COVID-19

Why study the impact of COVID-19 within congregate livings settings?”

Congregate living settings supporting individuals with neurodevelopmental intellectual and developmental disabilities experienced unprecedented challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic. To address these challenges, several studies focused on congregate living and COVID-19. These studies sought out to examine the successes and obstacles related to infection control protocols and implementation of infection control guidelines in practice. With the ultimate goal of enhancing the quality of life for residents in congregate living settings and establishing the development of appropriate care and response during emergency situations, continuous efforts are being made to investigate human rights focused housing models.

The goals of these studies:

  • Examine existing infectious disease policies and best practices in congregate living settings,
  • Identify the challenges and
  • Suggest a set of policy changes and recommendations,
  • Explore the evaluation and outcome metrics of supported living.
  • Explore human rights focused housing models.

Research Timeline


Study search conducted: Responses to Infectious Disease Outbreaks in Supported Living Environments for Individuals with Neurodevelopmental Disorders: a Scoping Review

E. A. Fitzgerald, M. Freeman, M. Rianto & B. Di Rezze (2023) Responses to infectious disease outbreaks in supported living environments for individuals with neurodevelopmental disorders: a scoping review, International Journal of Developmental Disabilities, 69:5, 644-653, DOI: 10.1080/20473869.2021.2012007


Study search conducted: Scoping Review of Measures Examining the Environments of Persons with Neurodevelopmental Disorders in a Supported Housing Setting

Elyse Letts, Matt Freeman, Caterina Gambino & Briano Di Rezze (2022) A scoping review of measures examining the environments of persons with neurodevelopmental disorders in a supported housing setting, International Journal of Developmental Disabilities, DOI: 10.1080/20473869.2022.2099508


Study search and interviews conducted: Examining the Development and Utilization of Infection Control Policies to Safely Support Adults with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities in Congregate Living Settings During COVID-19

Freeman, M., Crawford, A., Gough, L. et al. Examining the development and utilization of infection control policies to safely support adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities in congregate living settings during COVID-19. Can J Public Health 113, 918–929 (2022).


Focus groups conducted: Exploring the Implementation of COVID-19 Infection Control Guidance in Congregate Living Settings Supporting Those with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities