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Publication Detail
Do predictors of adherence to pandemic guidelines change over time? A panel study of 22,000 UK adults during the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Publication Type:
    Journal article
  • Publication Sub Type:
    Article
  • Authors:
    Wright L, Fancourt D
  • Publisher:
    Elsevier
  • Publication date:
    01/09/2021
  • Pagination:
    106713
  • Journal:
    Preventive Medicine
  • Status:
    Published
  • Country:
    United States
  • Print ISSN:
    0091-7435
  • PII:
    S0091-7435(21)00282-6
  • Language:
    eng
  • Keywords:
    COVID-19, Compliance, Non-pharmaceutical interventions
Abstract
In the absence of a vaccine, governments have focused on behaviour change (e.g. social distancing and enhanced hygiene procedures) to tackle the COVID-19 pandemic. Existing research on the predictors of compliance with pandemic measures has often produced discrepant results. One explanation for this may be that the determinants of compliance are context specific. Understanding whether this is the case is important for designing public health messaging and for evaluating the generalisability of existing research. We used data from the UCL COVID-19 Social Study; a large weekly panel of UK adults from first five months of lockdown in the UK (n = 22,625). We tested whether the extent to which demographic, socio-economic position, personality traits, social and pro-social motivations, and the living environment predict compliance changed across the pandemic using multilevel regression modelling. Low compliance was strongly related to younger age and also to risk attitudes, empathic concern, and high income, among other factors. The size of some of these associations was larger in later months when less stringent lockdown and household mixing measures were in place. The results showed that compliance was lower and fell faster across some groups, suggesting the importance that public health communications adopt a plurality of messages to maximize broad adherence.
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