SHORT REPORT
Associations between COVID-19 risk perceptions, behavior intentions and worry
 
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Department of Psychology, Grand Valley State University, Allendale, Michigan, United States
Submission date: 2021-11-04
Final revision date: 2022-02-25
Acceptance date: 2022-03-02
Online publication date: 2022-03-21
Publication date: 2022-03-21
 
Health Psychology Report 2022;10(2):139–148
 
KEYWORDS
TOPICS
ABSTRACT
Background:
Risk perceptions are central to health behavior, but some types of risk perceptions may be more strongly connected to behavior than others. This research examined different risk perceptions of COVID-19 and their respective associations with behavior intentions and worry.

Material and methods:
U.S. college students (N = 248) and general adults (N = 300) reported their risk perceptions of COVID-19 – including absolute numerical, verbal, comparative, and feelings of risk – as well as their worry and intentions to do things such as get vaccinated.

Results:
Although most risk perceptions related to intentions and worry, feelings of risk were the most strongly and consistently related. The associations showed that the higher people’s feelings of risk were, the greater were their intentions and worry.

Conclusions:
Assessing feelings of risk of COVID-19 may provide the best insight into people’s perceived threat of this virus.

 
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