Vanderbilt University continues research on COVID19 beliefs and behaviors


NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — Researchers at Vanderbilt University are studying how people’s beliefs about the spread of COVID19, impact behavior.

Dr. Jennifer Trueblood launched the study shortly after Tennessee’s first reported case of the novel coronavirus.

“I want to understand what people actually believe,” Trueblood said. “This is a cross-sectional study – so what that means is that we are asking different people at every point in time that we release a new wave [of survey questions], so we’re not asking the same people the same questions. We’re sampling a different set of people and we’ve done that 17 times.”

She estimated almost 40,000 people have been surveyed as of this week.

Thus far Trueblood and her team have found three big indicators that seem to reveal how someone might behave during the pandemic.

For example, whether a person chooses to go out or stay at home, and practice social distancing.

“What we term ‘financial constraint’ has been one of the biggest predictors, the next biggest …and they’re very close …has been political affiliation, region has played less of a role – like local area [case numbers].”

Trueblood hopes to have the research made available to the public via an online portal by the end of the summer.

To read more about the study click here.

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