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1.
BMJ Open ; 12(6): e060309, 2022 Jun 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1874562

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: To examine changes in the prevalence of six key chronic disease risk factors (the "Big 6"), from before (2019) to during (2021) the COVID-19 pandemic, among a large and geographically diverse sample of adolescents, and whether differences over time are associated with lockdown status and gender. DESIGN: Prospective cohort study. SETTING: Three Australian states (New South Wales, Queensland and Western Australia) spanning over 3000 km. PARTICIPANTS: 983 adolescents (baseline Mage=12.6, SD=0.5, 54.8% girl) drawn from the control group of the Health4Life Study. PRIMARY OUTCOMES: The prevalence of physical inactivity, poor diet (insufficient fruit and vegetable intake, high sugar-sweetened beverage intake, high discretionary food intake), poor sleep, excessive recreational screen time, alcohol use and tobacco use. RESULTS: The prevalence of excessive recreational screen time (prevalence ratios (PR)=1.06, 95% CI=1.03 to 1.11), insufficient fruit intake (PR=1.50, 95% CI=1.26 to 1.79), and alcohol (PR=4.34, 95% CI=2.82 to 6.67) and tobacco use (PR=4.05 95% CI=1.86 to 8.84) increased over the 2-year period, with alcohol use increasing more among girls (PR=2.34, 95% CI=1.19 to 4.62). The prevalence of insufficient sleep declined across the full sample (PR=0.74, 95% CI=0.68 to 0.81); however, increased among girls (PR=1.24, 95% CI=1.10 to 1.41). The prevalence of high sugar-sweetened beverage (PR=0.61, 95% CI=0.64 to 0.83) and discretionary food consumption (PR=0.73, 95% CI=0.64 to 0.83) reduced among those subjected to stay-at-home orders, compared with those not in lockdown. CONCLUSION: Lifestyle risk behaviours, particularly excessive recreational screen time, poor diet, physical inactivity and poor sleep, are prevalent among adolescents. Young people must be supported to find ways to improve or maintain their health, regardless of the course of the pandemic. Targeted approaches to support groups that may be disproportionately impacted, such as adolescent girls, are needed. TRIAL REGISTRATION NUMBER: Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry (ACTRN12619000431123).


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Pandemics , Adolescent , Australia , COVID-19/epidemiology , Communicable Disease Control , Female , Humans , Life Style , Longitudinal Studies , Prospective Studies , Risk-Taking
2.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 19(7)2022 03 24.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1847284

ABSTRACT

We investigated the prevalence of risk behaviors among Israeli adolescents (tobacco smoking, alcohol consumption, drug use) during the COVID-19 pandemic. Associations between different risk behaviors were examined and so was whether specific characteristics could predict risk behaviors in adolescents. The study consisted of 1020 Israeli adolescents aged 15-18. Study subjects completed an online survey between the first and second lockdowns in Israel (April 2020 to September 2020). Participants reported the frequency at which they engaged in four different risky behaviors: general risky behavior, tobacco smoking, alcohol consumption (binge drinking), and cannabis use. The most prevalent risky behavior in the sample was binge drinking (33.8%). The four measured risky behaviors were significantly correlated. Among participants who had previously engaged in a risky behavior assessed, most did not change the behavior frequency during the pandemic. All independent variables (sociodemographic characteristics, family support, and emotional, health excluding friends' support, physical activity volume, and coronavirus restrictions) were significantly different between participants engaging vs. not engaging in risky behaviors. Our findings suggest that family support is one of the most influential factors in preventing risky behavior during the pandemic, and they emphasize the importance of family-based interventions with children and adolescents from elementary to high school.


Subject(s)
Adolescent Behavior , Binge Drinking , COVID-19 , Adolescent , Adolescent Behavior/psychology , COVID-19/epidemiology , Child , Communicable Disease Control , Humans , Israel/epidemiology , Pandemics , Risk-Taking
3.
BMC Public Health ; 22(1): 903, 2022 05 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1822182

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Educational disparities in health and health behaviours have always been relevant in public health research and are particularly challenging in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic. First studies suggest that factors important for the containment of the COVID-19 pandemic, such as prevention behaviour, risk perception, perceived effectiveness of containment measures, and trust in authorities handling the pandemic, vary by educational status. This study builds on recent debate by examining trends in absolute and relative educational disparities in these factors in the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic in Germany. METHODS: Data stem from four waves of the GESIS Panel surveyed between March and October 2020 in Germany (15,902 observations from 4,690 individuals). Trends in absolute and relative disparities were examined for preventive behaviour, risk perception, perceived effectiveness of COVID-19 containment measures, and trust in individuals and institutions handling the COVID-19 pandemic by educational status using sex, age, residence, nationality, children under 16 living in household, family status, household size, the Big Five Inventory, and income class as control factors. Descriptive statistics as well as unadjusted and adjusted linear regression models and random effects models were performed. RESULTS: We observed an initially rising and then falling trend in preventive behaviour with consistent and significant absolute and relative disparities with a lower preventive behaviour among low educated individuals. Indication of a U-shaped trend with consistent significantly lower values among lower educated individuals was found for risk perception, whereas perceived effectiveness and trust decreased significantly over time but did not significantly vary by educational status. CONCLUSIONS: Results indicate persistent educational disparities in preventive behaviour and risk perception and a general decline in perceived effectiveness and trust in the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic in Germany. To address this overall downward trend and existing disparities, comprehensive and strategic management is needed to communicate the risks of the pandemic and the benefits of COVID-19 containment measures. Both must be adapted to the different needs of educational groups in particular in order to overcome gaps in preventive behaviour and risk perception by educational status.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Child , Cross-Sectional Studies , Educational Status , Germany/epidemiology , Humans , Pandemics/prevention & control , Perception , Risk-Taking , SARS-CoV-2 , Trust
4.
PLoS One ; 16(8): e0256806, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1808553

ABSTRACT

Scientific evidence plays an important role in the therapeutic decision-making process. What happens when physicians are forced to make therapeutic decisions under uncertainty? The absence of scientific guidelines at the beginning of a pandemic due to an unknown virus, such as COVID-19, could influence the perceived legitimacy of the application of non-evidence-based therapeutic approaches. This paper reports on a test of this hypothesis, in which we administered an ad hoc questionnaire to a sample of 64 Italian physicians during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic in Italy (April 2020). The questionnaire statements regarding the legitimacy of off-label or experimental drugs were framed according to three different scenarios (Normality, Emergency and COVID-19). Furthermore, as the perception of internal bodily sensations (i.e., interoception) modulates the decision-making process, we tested participants' interoceptive sensibility using the Multidimensional Assessment of Interoceptive Awareness (MAIA). The results showed that participants were more inclined to legitimate non-evidence-based therapeutic approaches in the COVID-19 and Emergency scenarios than the Normality scenario. We also found that scores on the MAIA Trusting subscale positively predicted this difference. Our findings demonstrate that uncertain medical scenarios, involving a dramatic increase in patient volume and acuity, can increase risk-taking in therapeutic decision-making. Furthermore, individual characteristics of health care providers, such as interoceptive ability, should be taken into account when constructing models to prevent the breakdown of healthcare systems in cases of severe emergency.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Physicians/psychology , Adult , Aged , COVID-19/virology , Decision Making , Drug Prescriptions , Emergency Treatment , Female , Humans , Interoception , Italy/epidemiology , Male , Middle Aged , Pandemics , Pharmaceutical Preparations/administration & dosage , Risk-Taking , SARS-CoV-2 , Surveys and Questionnaires
5.
PLoS One ; 17(3): e0264805, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1793506

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: Unlike previous pandemics, COVID-19 has sustained over a relatively longer period with cyclical infection waves and numerous variants. Public transport ridership has been hit particularly hard. To restore travellers' confidence it is critical to assess their risk determinants and trade-offs. METHODS: To this end, we survey train travellers in the Netherlands in order to: (i) quantify the impact of trip-specific, policy-based, and pandemic-related attributes on travellers' COVID-19 risk perceptions; and (ii) evaluate the trade-off between this risk perception and other travel attributes. Adopting the hierarchical information integration approach, in a two-stage stated preference experiment, respondents are asked to first rate how risky they perceive different travel situations to be, and then to choose between different travel options that include their own perceived risk rating as an attribute. Perceived risk ratings and choices between travel options are modelled using a linear regression and a mixed multinomial logit model, respectively. RESULTS: We find that on-board crowding and infection rates are the most important factors for risk perception. Amongst personal characteristics, the vulnerability of family and friends has the largest impact-nearly twice that of personal health risk. The bridging choice experiment reveals that while values of time have remained similar to pre-pandemic estimates, travellers are significantly more likely to choose routes with less COVID-19 risk (e.g., due to lower crowding). Respondents making longer trips by train value risk four times as much as their shorter trip counterparts. By combining the two models, we also report willingness to pay for mitigating factors: reduced crowding, mask mandates, and increased sanitization. CONCLUSION: Since we evaluate the impact of a large number of variables on route choice behaviour, we can use the estimated models to predict behaviour under detailed pandemic scenarios. Moreover, in addition to highlighting the importance of COVID-19 risk perceptions in public transport route choices, the results from this study provide valuable information regarding the mitigating impacts of various policies on perceived risk.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Choice Behavior/physiology , Perception/physiology , Transportation/methods , Travel/psychology , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , COVID-19/etiology , COVID-19/transmission , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Netherlands/epidemiology , Risk Assessment , Risk Factors , Risk-Taking , SARS-CoV-2 , Surveys and Questionnaires , Time Factors , Young Adult
6.
Front Public Health ; 10: 854616, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1785452

ABSTRACT

Background: Young men who have sex with men (YMSM) are at high risk of HIV infection that accounts for an increasing proportion of new human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infections in China. However, little is known about the trajectories of sexual risk behaviors in this population. The study aimed to investigate longitudinal patterns of sexual risk behaviors among YMSM in China. Methods: Study data were collected from a prospective cohort study among 460 YMSM from 2017 to 2020. Based on the predicted HIV infection risk scores, distinct sexual risk behaviors trajectories of YMSM were estimated and plotted using the group-based censored normal model to identify the predictors of trajectories change over time. Results: Three sexual risk behaviors trajectories were identified: a decreasing low-risk group (7.6%), an intermediate-risk group (67.4%), and an ascending high-risk group (25.0%).Compared to the decreasing low-risk group, intermediate-risk group membership was associated with being from rural areas, current smoker and higher depressive symptoms; ascending high-risk group membership was associated with an education level of high school or lower, being from rural areas, younger age at sex debut with a man, current smoker, higher depressive symptoms and sexual minority stress. Conclusions: Sexual risk behaviors among YMSM changed over time within different trajectories. Identifying YMSM belonging to high-risk trajectories before HIV infection is vital for the intervention and may reduce HIV transmission.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , HIV Infections , Sexual and Gender Minorities , HIV Infections/epidemiology , Homosexuality, Male , Humans , Male , Prospective Studies , Risk-Taking
7.
MMWR Suppl ; 71(3): 1-7, 2022 Apr 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1771892

ABSTRACT

Many U.S. schools closed nationwide in March 2020 to prevent the spread of COVID-19. School closures and online-only instruction have negatively affected certain students, with studies showing adverse effects of the pandemic on mental health. However, little is known about other experiences such as economic and food insecurity and abuse by a parent, as well as risk behaviors such as alcohol and drug use among youths across the United States during the pandemic. To address this gap, CDC developed the one-time, online Adolescent Behaviors and Experiences Survey (ABES), which was conducted during January-June 2021 to assess student behaviors and experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic among high school students, including unintentional injury, violence, tobacco product use, sexual behaviors, and dietary behaviors. This overview report of the ABES MMWR Supplement describes the ABES methodology, including the student questionnaire and administration, sampling, data collection, weighting, and analysis. ABES used a stratified, three-stage cluster probability-based sampling approach to obtain a nationally representative sample of students in grades 9-12 attending public and private schools. Teachers of selected classes provided students with access to the anonymous online survey while following local consent procedures. Data were collected using a 110-item questionnaire during January-June 2021 in 128 schools. A total of 7,998 students submitted surveys, and 7,705 of these surveys had valid data (i.e., ≥20 questions answered). The school response rate was 38%, the student response rate was 48%, and the overall response rate was 18%. Information on mode of instruction and school-provided equipment was also collected from all sampled schools. This overview report provides student- and school-level characteristics obtained from descriptive analyses, and the other reports in the ABES MMWR Supplement include information on substance use, mental health and suicidality, perceived racism, and disruptions to student life among high school students. Findings from ABES during the COVID-19 pandemic can help guide parents, teachers, school administrators, community leaders, clinicians, and public health officials in decision-making for student support and school health programs.


Subject(s)
Adolescent Behavior , COVID-19 , Adolescent , COVID-19/epidemiology , Humans , Pandemics , Risk-Taking , Surveys and Questionnaires , United States/epidemiology
8.
Q J Exp Psychol (Hove) ; 75(5): 784-795, 2022 May.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1765386

ABSTRACT

Outcomes of clinical trials need to be communicated effectively to make decisions that save lives. We investigated whether framing can bias these decisions and if risk preferences shift depending on the number of patients. Hypothetical information about two medicines used in clinical trials having a sure or a risky outcome was presented in either a gain frame (people would be saved) or a loss frame (people would die). The number of patients who signed up for the clinical trials was manipulated in both frames in all the experiments. Using an unnamed disease, lay participants (experiment 1) and would-be medical professionals (experiment 2) were asked to choose which medicine they would have administered. For COVID-19, lay participants were asked which medicine should medical professionals (experiment 3), artificially intelligent software (experiment 4), and they themselves (experiment 5) favour to be administered. Broadly consistent with prospect theory, people were more risk-seeking in the loss frames than the gain frames. However, risk-aversion in gain frames was sensitive to the number of lives with risk-neutrality at low magnitudes and risk-aversion at high magnitudes. In the loss frame, participants were mostly risk-seeking. This pattern was consistent across laypersons and medical professionals, further extended to preferences for choices that medical professionals and artificial intelligence programmes should make in the context of COVID-19. These results underscore how medical decisions can be impacted by the number of lives at stake while revealing inconsistent risk preferences for clinical trials during a real pandemic.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Risk-Taking , Artificial Intelligence , Clinical Trials as Topic , Decision Making , Humans
10.
PLoS One ; 17(3): e0265680, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1745304

ABSTRACT

Epidemiological evidence and recommendations from the World Health Organization suggest that close face-to-face interactions pose a particular coronavirus transmission risk. The real-life prevalence and nature of such high-risk contacts are understudied, however. Here, we video-observed high-risk contacts in outdoor public places in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, during the COVID-19 pandemic. We found that high-risk contacts were relatively uncommon: Of the 7,813 individuals observed, only 20 (0.26%) displayed high-risk contacts. Further, we qualitatively examined the 20 high-risk contacts identified and found that they occurred disproportionally between affiliated persons engaged in affiliative behaviors. We discuss the potential public health implications of the relatively low incident rate of high-risk contacts.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/transmission , Health Risk Behaviors , Risk-Taking , Video Recording/methods , COVID-19/epidemiology , Cities/epidemiology , Humans , Interpersonal Relations , Netherlands/epidemiology
11.
Asian Pac J Cancer Prev ; 22(12): 4051-4056, 2021 Dec 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1727352

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: This study aimed to evaluate the impact of cigarette smoking and health-related quality of life among Saudi secondary vocational students during the COVID-19 pandemic. METHODS: A convenience sample of 328 answered a web-based self-administered questionnaire based on the Youth Risky Behavior Monitoring System (YRBSS) plus the Short Form 12 (SF-12) were included in the study. The target population included all Saudi students enrolled at the Secondary Industrial Institute in Dammam, Saudi Arabia, during December 2020 and February 2021. RESULTS: Out of the total of 328 male participants, representing a response rate of 38.59%, the highest percentage of respondents were in the first year (45.4%), the mean age of the participants was 17.73 years with a standard deviation (SD) of 1.85 years. The prevalence of current smokers, past smokers, and never smokers accounted for 30.2%, 21.3%, and 48.5%, respectively. First-year students reported relatively high levels of smoking prevalence and low physical scores of health-related quality of life (HRQoL). The overall mean of HRQoL of current smokers, past smokers, and never smokers accounted for 58.60, 58.38, and 63.66, respectively. In addition, current smokers reported a relatively low physical score of HRQoL 55.73. CONCLUSION: This is the first report to explore the impact of smoking on HRQoL of Secondary Industrial Institute students in Saudi Arabia during the COVID-19 pandemic. The results indicate that smoking has a negative impact on the quality of life of vocational students. Therefore, a health strategies plan may be developed to improve the quality of life for vocational students in Saudi Arabia. OBJECTIVE: This study aimed to evaluate the impact of cigarette smoking and health-related quality of life among Saudi secondary vocational students during the COVID-19 pandemic. METHODS: A convenience sample of 328 answered a web-based self-administered questionnaire based on the Youth Risky Behavior Monitoring System (YRBSS) plus the Short Form 12 (SF-12) were included in the study. The target population included all Saudi students enrolled at the Secondary Industrial Institute in Dammam, Saudi Arabia, during December 2020 and February 2021. RESULTS: Out of the total of 328 male participants, representing a response rate of 38.59%, the highest percentage of respondents were in the first year (45.4%), the mean age of the participants was 17.73 years with a standard deviation (SD) of 1.85 years. The prevalence of current smokers, past smokers, and never smokers accounted for 30.2%, 21.3%, and 48.5%, respectively. First-year students reported relatively high levels of smoking prevalence and low physical scores of health-related quality of life (HRQoL). The overall mean of HRQoL of current smokers, past smokers, and never smokers accounted for 58.60, 58.38, and 63.66, respectively. In addition, current smokers reported a relatively low physical score of HRQoL 55.73. CONCLUSION: This is the first report to explore the impact of smoking on HRQoL of Secondary Industrial Institute students in Saudi Arabia during the COVID-19 pandemic. The results indicate that smoking has a negative impact on the quality of life of vocational students. Therefore, a health strategies plan may be developed to improve the quality of life for vocational students in Saudi Arabia.


Subject(s)
Quality of Life , Tobacco Smoking/adverse effects , Adolescent , COVID-19 , Humans , Male , Pandemics , Prevalence , Risk-Taking , Saudi Arabia , Students , Surveys and Questionnaires
12.
Health Psychol ; 41(2): 104-114, 2022 Feb.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1721431

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: Psychiatric disorders increase risk for contracting coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), but we know little about relationships between psychiatric symptoms and COVID-19 risky and protective behaviors. Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) has been associated with increased propensity to engage in risky behaviors, but may also be associated with increased COVID-19 protective behaviors due to increased threat sensitivity and social isolation. METHOD: We examined associations of PTSD symptoms with COVID-19-related protective and risky behaviors using data from a cross-sectional online United States study among 845 US adults in August through September 2020. PTSD symptoms (PTSD Checklist-5), sociodemographics, COVID-19-related experiences and vulnerabilities, and past 30-day engagement in 10 protective and eight risky behaviors for COVID-19 were assessed via self-report. We examined associations between PTSD symptoms and COVID-19 protective and risky behaviors with linear regressions, adjusting for covariates. RESULTS: Probable PTSD and higher PTSD symptom severity were associated with greater engagement in protective behaviors, but also greater engagement in risky behaviors. Associations were only slightly attenuated by adjustment for COVID-19 exposures and perceived likelihood and severity of COVID-19. Associations varied by PTSD clusters: intrusions and arousal were associated with both more protective and more risky behaviors, whereas negative cognitions or mood was associated only with more risky, and avoidance only with more protective, behaviors. CONCLUSION: Higher PTSD symptoms were associated with engagement in more protective but also more risky behaviors for COVID-19. Mental health should be considered in the design of public health campaigns dedicated to limiting infectious disease spread. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2022 APA, all rights reserved).


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic , Adult , COVID-19/prevention & control , Cross-Sectional Studies , Humans , Risk-Taking , SARS-CoV-2 , Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic/psychology , United States/epidemiology
13.
Workplace Health Saf ; 70(5): 235-241, 2022 May.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1673877

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: During the COVID-19 pandemic, use of symptom-screening tools to limit attendance of infected workers has been widespread. However, it remains unknown how the reliability of responses to these tools may be compromised by individual and social factors. We aimed to determine whether personal concern over lost wages impacts responses to COVID-19 symptom-screening questionnaires making them less useful in limiting person-to-person transmission. METHODS: We utilized an anonymous online questionnaire, administered through personal social media networks and those of two U.S. private colleges between September 16, 2020 and November 2, 2020 and distributed to currently or recently employed individuals 18 years of age or older. Participants considered ambiguous hypothetical scenarios involving possible COVID-19 symptoms or exposure and responded to a COVID-19 symptom screen (N = 219). FINDINGS: In response to symptom-related scenarios (i.e., elevated temperature or slight cough), respondents lacking access to paid sick leave were 2.2 to 2.7 times more likely to attend work than those with access to paid leave (p < .05). This was not true for contact-related scenarios. Pay type and income level also significantly influenced screening responses. CONCLUSION/APPLICATION TO PRACTICE: Risk of acute wage loss and overall financial stability appear to influence work-attendance decisions with regard to COVID-19 symptom screens. Broadened availability of paid leave and additional specificity within screening questionnaires would likely improve symptom-screen reliability.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Adolescent , Adult , Humans , Pandemics , Reproducibility of Results , Risk-Taking , Salaries and Fringe Benefits , Sick Leave
14.
BMJ Open ; 12(2): e054770, 2022 02 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1666416

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: There has been no study in Japan on the predictors of risk for acquiring SARS-CoV-2 infection based on people's behaviour during the COVID-19 pandemic. The aim of this study was to document changes in risk behaviour during the New Year's holiday season in 2021 and to identify factors associated with high-risk behaviour for infection using a quantitative assessment tool. DESIGN: A longitudinal survey. SETTING: Multiphasic health check-ups for the general population in Iwate Prefecture. PARTICIPANTS: Serial cross-sectional data were obtained using rapid online surveys of residents in Iwate Prefecture from 4 to 7 December 2020 (baseline survey) and from 5 to 7 February 2021 (follow-up survey). The data in those two surveys were available for a total of 9741 participants. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: We estimated each individual's risk of acquiring SARS-CoV-2 infection based on the microCOVID calculator. We defined four trajectories of individual risk behaviours based on the probabilities of remaining at low risk, increasing to high risk, improving to low risk and persistence of high risk. RESULTS: Among people in the low-risk group in the first survey, 3.6% increased to high risk, while high risk persisted in 80.0% of people who were in the high-risk group at baseline. While healthcare workers were significantly more likely to be represented in both the increasing risk and persistently high-risk group, workers in the education setting were also associated with persistence of high risk (OR 2.58, 95% CI 1.52 to 4.39; p<0.001). CONCLUSIONS: In determining countermeasures against COVID-19 (as well as future outbreaks), health officials should take into account population changes in behaviour during large-scale public events.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Cross-Sectional Studies , Holidays , Humans , Japan/epidemiology , Longitudinal Studies , Pandemics , Risk-Taking , SARS-CoV-2 , Seasons
15.
J Exp Psychol Appl ; 27(4): 679-694, 2021 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1650622

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed our lives to a profound extent. In this research, we examined how the pandemic might have influenced people's general risk attitude in their daily lives. Across four studies (two preregistered) using U.S. online worker and Canadian university student samples, we observed that individuals who were severely affected by the pandemic showed higher risk taking toward a variety of risky activities than those who were less severely affected. We attributed this effect to elevated boredom levels and increased perceived benefits from taking risks among the severely affected group and provided supporting evidence. Data ruled out risk perception, income, employment status, and response biases as alternative explanations. Our findings shed light on the psychological consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic, decision under risk, the role of perceived benefits of risk taking, and effective policy interventions. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2022 APA, all rights reserved).


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Pandemics , Canada , Humans , Risk-Taking , SARS-CoV-2
16.
BMC Public Health ; 22(1): 101, 2022 01 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1633131

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: There is a continuing risk for COVID-19 transmission in school settings while transmission is ongoing in the community, particularly among unvaccinated populations. To ensure that schools continue to operate safely and to inform implementation of prevention strategies, it is imperative to gain better understanding of the risk behaviors of staff and students. This secondary analysis describes the prevalence of COVID-19 risk behaviors in an exposed population of students and school staff in the pre-vaccine era and identifies associations between these behaviors and testing positive for SARS-CoV-2. METHODS: From December 2020-January 2021, school staff and students exposed to confirmed COVID-19 cases in a Georgia school district were tested for SARS-CoV-2 and surveyed regarding risk behaviors in and out of school. Prevalence of risk behaviors was described by age group and school level, and associations with SARS-CoV-2 positivity were identified using chi squared tests. RESULTS: Overall, 717 students and 79 school staff participated in the investigation; SARS-CoV-2 positivity was 9.2%. In the 2 weeks prior to COVID-19 exposure, 24% of participants reported unmasked indoor time at school, 40% attended social gatherings with non-household members, and 71% visited out-of-school indoor locations, including 19% who ate indoors in restaurants. Frequencies of risk behaviors increased by age. Among students, 17% participated in school sports, of whom 86% participated without a mask. SARS-CoV-2 positivity was significantly associated with school sports and unmasked time in sports. Among K-5 students, positivity was associated with exposure to a teacher index case. CONCLUSIONS: This analysis highlights the high prevalence of risk behaviors in an unvaccinated population exposed to COVID-19 in school and identifies an association between student sports participation and SARS-CoV-2 positivity. These findings illustrate the importance of school-level prevention measures to reduce SARS-CoV-2 transmission, including limiting close-contact indoor sports and promoting consistent mask use in unvaccinated individuals. Future research could explore the role of community vaccination programs as a strategy to reduce COVID-19 transmission and introductions into school settings.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Vaccines , Georgia , Humans , Prevalence , Risk-Taking , SARS-CoV-2 , Schools
17.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 19(1)2022 01 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1613758

ABSTRACT

Young drivers are generally associated with risky driving behaviors that can lead to crash involvement. Many self-report measurement scales are used to assess such risky behaviors. This study is aimed to understand the risky driving behaviors of young adults in Qatar and how such behaviors are associated with crash involvement. This was achieved through the usage of validated self-report measurement scales adopted for the Arabic context. A nationwide cross-sectional and exploratory study was conducted in Qatar from January to April 2021. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the survey was conducted online. Therefore, respondents were selected conveniently. Hence, the study adopted a non-probability sampling method in which convenience and snowball sampling were used. A total of 253 completed questionnaires were received, of which 57.3% were female, and 42.7% were male. Approximately 55.8% of these young drivers were involved in traffic accidents after obtaining their driving license. On average, most young drivers do have some risky driving behavior accompanied by a low tendency to violate traffic laws, and their driving style is not significantly controlled by their personality on the road. The older young drivers are more involved in traffic accidents than the younger drivers, i.e., around 1.5 times more likely. Moreover, a young male driver is 3.2 times less likely to be involved in traffic accidents than a female driver. In addition, males are only 0.309 times as likely as females to be involved in an accident and have approximately a 70% lower likelihood of having an accident versus females. The analysis is complemented with the association between young drivers' demographic background and psychosocial-behavioral parameters (linking risky driving behavior, personality, and obligation effects on crash involvement). Some interventions are required to improve driving behavior, such as driving apps that are able to monitor and provide corrective feedback.


Subject(s)
Automobile Driving , COVID-19 , Accidents, Traffic , Cross-Sectional Studies , Female , Humans , Male , Pandemics , Qatar/epidemiology , Risk-Taking , SARS-CoV-2 , Surveys and Questionnaires , Young Adult
19.
PLoS One ; 16(3): e0243263, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1576004

ABSTRACT

As mobile device location data become increasingly available, new analyses are revealing the significant changes of mobility pattern when an unplanned event happened. With different control policies from local and state government, the COVID-19 outbreak has dramatically changed mobility behavior in affected cities. This study has been investigating the impact of COVID-19 on the number of people involved in crashes accounting for the intensity of different control measures using Negative Binomial (NB) method. Based on a comprehensive dataset of people involved in crashes aggregated in New York City during January 1, 2020 to May 24, 2020, people involved in crashes with respect to travel behavior, traffic characteristics and socio-demographic characteristics are found. The results show that the average person miles traveled on the main traffic mode per person per day, percentage of work trip have positive effect on person involved in crashes. On the contrary, unemployment rate and inflation rate have negative effects on person involved in crashes. Interestingly, different level of control policies during COVID-19 outbreak are closely associated with safety awareness, driving and travel behavior, and thus has an indirect influence on the frequency of crashes. Comparing to other three control policies including emergence declare, limits on mass gatherings, and ban on all nonessential gathering, the negative relationship between stay-at-home policy implemented in New York City from March 20, 2020 and the number of people involved crashes is found in our study.


Subject(s)
Accidents, Traffic/statistics & numerical data , Automobile Driving/statistics & numerical data , COVID-19 , Safety/statistics & numerical data , Travel/statistics & numerical data , Humans , New York City , Public Policy , Risk-Taking
20.
Front Public Health ; 9: 688300, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1566659

ABSTRACT

Background: Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, individuals have been encouraged to engage in health-promoting behaviors, namely actions taken to prevent infection and keep themselves healthy, such as maintaining social distancing. However, other factors, such as risk perception and feelings of fear, also might influence whether an individual takes such measures. This study compared people's responses to the pandemic in terms of their adoption of COVID-19 health-promoting behaviors, COVID-19 risk perceptions, and attention to COVID-19-related information during two periods: the 2020 Chinese New Year (CNY) in Hong Kong (HK), i.e., the very beginning of the COVID-19 outbreak (Time 1, T1), and summer 2020, i.e., before and during the third wave of COVID-19 infections in HK (Time 2, T2). Methods: Data were extracted from 180 HK participants, who were asked to recall and report their health-promoting behaviors, emotional and cognitive COVID-19 risk perceptions, and attention to COVID-19-related information during T1 and T2. A repeated-measures ANOVA series was conducted to investigate differences in public responses between the two aforementioned time points. Main Findings: After controlling for the effects from gender, age, and education levels, the participants reported practicing more infection-prevention behaviors, experiencing a lower level of fear as a psychological response, and paying less attention to COVID-19-related information during T2 than T1. Conclusions: This study addressed the need to monitor public responses to the COVID-19 pandemic, including changes in people's behaviors and psychological responses across time. The results also suggest that the HK public was steered toward striking a balance between strengthening their infection-prevention behaviors and reducing their fear of COVID-19 infection.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Pandemics , Hong Kong/epidemiology , Humans , Risk-Taking , SARS-CoV-2
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