Delivering Social Services during the COVID-19 Pandemic: The Case of Older People Centers in Hong Kong

C. K. CHAN*, M. Y. TANG, M. L. LEE

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)peer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


This study investigated how Hong Kong’s community centers for older people faced challenges and delivered services amid the Covid-19 pandemic. According to experiences of 110 health and social care workers who completed an electronic questionnaire, the provision of center-based services of most respondents were severely affected. Some of them launched online services but faced various constraints such as staff members’ limited knowledge, insufficient technical support and service users’ lacking required devices and poor internet connection. Hong Kong’s experience shows that digital literacy needs to be embedded into the future health and social care training curriculum. Also, effective digital communication training packages need to be developed with the involvement of service users. Moreover, innovative approaches have become imperative for health and social care practitioners to deal with the Covid-19 pandemic. Future studies can investigate the impact of Covid-19 from the perspective of older respondents and on various types of social services. Also, qualitative research methods can be adopted to collect rich data for deeper understandings on the difficulties of both service providers and users on delivering and receiving internet-based health and welfare services. In short, future studies can examine service users’ views on the impact of Covid-19 by using in-depth interviews.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-11
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Social Service Research
Issue number1
Early online date29 Jul 2021
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.


  • Covid-19
  • digital literacy
  • internet-based welfare services
  • older people centers
  • protective facilities


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