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Title: Adolescents' adherence to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines during the COVID‐19 pandemic
Background:The outbreak of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic in theUnited States resulted in safety guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control andPrevention (CDC) intended to curb the spread of the virus. Adolescents are poten-tially at risk for disregarding these guidelines due to their reduced psychosocial matu-rity compared with adults. The current study examined the relationship betweenadolescents' psychosocial maturity, perceived importance of the CDC guidelines andadherence to the CDC guidelines within some of the highest risk groups for contract-ing COVID-19 in a county particularly impacted by the pandemic (i.e., Hispanic andlow-SES youth in El Paso, Texas).Methods:Participants completed a phone interview with a research assistant regard-ing their thoughts and behaviours in the initial months of the COVID-19 pandemic.Adolescents (N=68) were 15.38 years old on average (SD=1.05,range=13, 17),predominantly male (60.3%) and nearly exclusively Hispanic/Latino (94.1%).Results:Results indicated that although more psychosocially mature adolescentsreported greater adherence to the CDC guidelines than less psychosocially matureadolescents, the association between psychosocial maturity and adherence was fullymediated by how important adolescents felt it was to follow the guidelines. Specifi-cally, greater perceived importance was associated with greater adherence to theguidelines.Conclusions:The current study found that more psychosocially mature adolescentsadhere to CDC's safety guidelines better than less psychosocially mature adolescentsbecause they are more more » likely to view the guidelines as important. Information thatattempts to increase adolescent adherence to the guidelines should thereforeemphasize not only that following the guidelines is important, butwhyfollowing theguidelines is so important. Less psychosocially mature adolescents may benefit mostfrom interventions efforts and targeted messages regarding the importance offollowing the CDC's guidelines, as more psychosocially mature adolescents alreadyrecognize this importance. « less
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Award ID(s):
2028534 1826585
Publication Date:
Journal Name:
Child: Care, Health and Development
Page Range or eLocation-ID:
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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