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Curr Psychol ; : 1-13, 2021 Oct 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2323846


In order to gain a better understanding of what happens during the COVID-19 pandemic to those who were previously traumatized, this study investigated perceived stress and severity of PTSD symptoms during the COVID-19 pandemic in people who experienced the 1992-1995 war in Bosnia and Herzegovina. It was also examined how reminders of past trauma and loneliness instigated by the COVID-19 crisis relate to current stress and PTSD symptoms. The sample consisted of 123 participants (74.8% women). Participants responded to assessments of sociodemographic characteristics, exposure to COVID-related information, concerns over disease, severity of exposure to war, frequency and intensity of war trauma reminders, loneliness, stress, and severity of PTSD symptoms. Data was collected as part of [edited out for blind review] Global Survey. Results showed that in a population previously exposed to the effects of war, severity of PTSD symptoms was positively related to perceived stress, and loneliness during the pandemic significantly mediated this relationship. Intensity of exposure to war trauma reminders was associated with higher levels of PTSD symptom severity. Higher severity of PTSD symptoms was related to forced displacement during the war. Moreover, higher stress was related to increased concerns over disease. To conclude, those exposed to war may be more affected by the global COVID-19 pandemic and preventive measures that accompany it, while loneliness mediates the effects of PTSD and perceived stress in this population.

J Environ Psychol ; 88: 102007, 2023 Jun.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2301046


Primary stressors are direct outcomes of extreme events (e.g., viruses, floodwater) whereas secondary stressors stem from pre-disaster life circumstances and societal arrangements (e.g., illness, problematic pre-disaster policies) or from inefficient responses to the extreme event. Secondary stressors can cause significant long-term damage to people affected but are also tractable and amenable to change. In this study we explored the association between secondary stressors, social identity processes, social support, and perceived stress and resilience. Pre-registered analyses of data from the COVIDiSTRESS Global Survey Round II (N = 14,600; 43 countries) show that secondary stressors are positively associated with perceived stress and negatively associated with resilience, even when controlling for the effects of primary stressors. Being a woman or having lower socioeconomic status (SES) is associated with higher exposure to secondary stressors, higher perceived stress, and lower resilience. Importantly, social identification is positively associated with expected support and with increased resilience and lower perceived stress. However, neither gender, SES, or social identification moderated the relationship between secondary stressors and perceived stress and resilience. In conclusion, systemic reforms and the availability of social support are paramount to reducing the effects of secondary stressors.

Curr Psychol ; : 1, 2022 Mar 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1719011


[This corrects the article DOI: 10.1007/s12144-021-02407-x.].

Pers Individ Dif ; 190: 111531, 2022 May.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1648434


The rapid outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) has affected citizens' daily lives in an unprecedented way. To curb the spread of the pandemic, governments have taken numerous measures such as social distancing and quarantine, which may be associated with psychological consequences, namely stress and loneliness globally. To understand differential associations of personality traits with psychological consequences of COVID-19, we utilize data from a sample of 99,217 individuals from 41 countries collected as part of the COVIDiSTRESS Global Survey. Data were analyzed using multigroup confirmatory factor analysis and multilevel regression models. Findings showed that while some of the associations were rather weak, Big Five personality traits were significantly associated with perceived stress and loneliness during the pandemic. Our study illustrates that neuroticism especially can be a vulnerability factor for stress and loneliness in times of crisis and can contribute to detection of at-risk individuals and optimization of psychological treatments during or after the COVID-19 pandemic.

Br J Soc Psychol ; 61(3): 952-970, 2022 Jul.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1505749


To tackle the spread of COVID-19, governments worldwide have implemented restrictive public health behavioural measures. Whether and when these measures lead to positive or negative psychological outcomes is still debated. In this study, drawing on a large sample of individuals (Ntotal  = 89,798) from 45 nations, we investigated whether the stringency of public health measures implemented at the outset of the COVID-19 pandemic in March-May 2020 was associated with individuals' levels of stress and compliance. Moreover, we addressed the question of how these associations may be moderated by the measures' implementation lag, nations' tolerance for unequal distributions of power (i.e., power distance), and individuals' institutional trust. Linear mixed models suggested that slower implementation of less stringent measures was associated with higher stress and lower compliance. Also, rapid implementation of stricter measures was associated with a mild increase in stress. Such effects were especially pronounced in countries with less tolerance for inequality. Albeit significant, the moderating effect of institutional trust was very small. The results suggest that it may be important to consider the measures' implementation lag when tackling the spread of COVID-19, but findings should be interpreted in relation to the data collection period.

COVID-19 , Pandemics , COVID-19/prevention & control , Government , Humans , Iron , Pandemics/prevention & control , SARS-CoV-2
R Soc Open Sci ; 8(2): 200589, 2021 Feb 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1223419


The COVIDiSTRESS global survey collects data on early human responses to the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic from 173 429 respondents in 48 countries. The open science study was co-designed by an international consortium of researchers to investigate how psychological responses differ across countries and cultures, and how this has impacted behaviour, coping and trust in government efforts to slow the spread of the virus. Starting in March 2020, COVIDiSTRESS leveraged the convenience of unpaid online recruitment to generate public data. The objective of the present analysis is to understand relationships between psychological responses in the early months of global coronavirus restrictions and help understand how different government measures succeed or fail in changing public behaviour. There were variations between and within countries. Although Western Europeans registered as more concerned over COVID-19, more stressed, and having slightly more trust in the governments' efforts, there was no clear geographical pattern in compliance with behavioural measures. Detailed plots illustrating between-countries differences are provided. Using both traditional and Bayesian analyses, we found that individuals who worried about getting sick worked harder to protect themselves and others. However, concern about the coronavirus itself did not account for all of the variances in experienced stress during the early months of COVID-19 restrictions. More alarmingly, such stress was associated with less compliance. Further, those most concerned over the coronavirus trusted in government measures primarily where policies were strict. While concern over a disease is a source of mental distress, other factors including strictness of protective measures, social support and personal lockdown conditions must also be taken into consideration to fully appreciate the psychological impact of COVID-19 and to understand why some people fail to follow behavioural guidelines intended to protect themselves and others from infection. The Stage 1 manuscript associated with this submission received in-principle acceptance (IPA) on 18 May 2020. Following IPA, the accepted Stage 1 version of the manuscript was preregistered on the Open Science Framework at This preregistration was performed prior to data analysis.