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Open AccessArticle

The Moderating Effects of Perceived Severity on the Generational Gap in Preventive Behaviors during the COVID-19 Pandemic in the U.S.

1
Department of Online Communication, School of Journalism and Communication, South China University of Technology, Guangzhou 510006, China
2
Department of Communication, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC 27695, USA
3
Department of Media & Communication, School of Arts and Science, Ferrum College, Ferrum, VA 24151, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Fabrizio Bert and Christian Napoli
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(4), 2011; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18042011
Received: 16 December 2020 / Revised: 8 February 2021 / Accepted: 9 February 2021 / Published: 19 February 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Challenges and Crucial Topics for 2030 Public Health)
During the COVID-19 pandemic, older adults appear to be more susceptible to the coronavirus disease. Although the health stakes are higher for older adults, individuals of all ages should adopt preventive measures to contain the human-to-human transmission of the virus. This study conducted a national online survey of 1843 adults at the early stage of the COVID-19 pandemic in the U.S. to examine age disparities in preventive behaviors against the virus. The results show that older generations, motivated by a higher perceived severity of the disease, were more likely to take the precautionary actions recommended by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) than younger generations. This thus suggests that persuasive health messages addressing the severity of COVID-19 might reduce the generational gap and promote preventive behaviors among young people, to protect themselves and the elderly. View Full-Text
Keywords: risk perception; perceived severity; preventive behavior; generational gap; COVID-19 risk perception; perceived severity; preventive behavior; generational gap; COVID-19
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MDPI and ACS Style

Luo, Y.; Cheng, Y.; Sui, M. The Moderating Effects of Perceived Severity on the Generational Gap in Preventive Behaviors during the COVID-19 Pandemic in the U.S. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18, 2011. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18042011

AMA Style

Luo Y, Cheng Y, Sui M. The Moderating Effects of Perceived Severity on the Generational Gap in Preventive Behaviors during the COVID-19 Pandemic in the U.S. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2021; 18(4):2011. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18042011

Chicago/Turabian Style

Luo, Yunjuan; Cheng, Yang; Sui, Mingxiao. 2021. "The Moderating Effects of Perceived Severity on the Generational Gap in Preventive Behaviors during the COVID-19 Pandemic in the U.S." Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 18, no. 4: 2011. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18042011

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