UCSF researchers recently published a new manuscript using data collected from the COVID-19 Citizen Science Study. This manuscript, published in the BMJ Open journal, sought to determine what types of behaviors could modify a person’s risk of contracting COVID-19.
28,575 participants across 99 different countries contributed data for this study. The data analyzed in the study were collected between March 2020 and October 2020–before COVID-19 vaccinations were widely available. The study found that three variables were strongly associated with increased risk of contracting COVID-19:
– Number of non-household contacts
– Attending large gatherings
– Visiting restaurants
The study also found that younger people were more likely to test positive for COVID-19 compared to older individuals. While the lower risk in older individuals may seem counterintuitive, this finding may be due to increased compliance with social distancing guidelines and other protective measures in this more vulnerable population.
This study highlights the role of modifiable behaviors in mitigating COVID-19 transmission and reducing an individual’s risk of contracting COVID-19. Even though vaccines are widely available now, people can still modify their behaviors to help reduce the spread of COVID-19 while we navigate through this pandemic.