New COVID-19 survey gives everyone a chance to be part of the rebound

Posted at 5:21 AM, May 22, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-22 08:33:04-04

LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX18) — Whether it has been working from home, wearing a mask or social distancing, there have been lots of recommendations and changes made during the coronavirus, but not everyone feels or reacts the same way to these directives. That is why public health professionals at the University of Kentucky want to hear from you, to better shape the response and recovery efforts going forward to get on the road to the rebound sooner rather than later.

For public health experts, the pandemic has put every bit of their expertise to the test.

"This is what we do. Public health has people's backs, " said Marc Kiviniemi, PhD, of the College of Public Health at the University of Kentucky.

Typically, their work involves trying to encourage people to engage in healthier behaviors to live longer or healthier, but in the case of COVID-19, much of what people do or do not do not only affects themselves but the entire community.

Kiviniemi said, "It really is something where we're all in this together, and it's only by everyone taking preventive behaviors that we stay healthy ourselves, but we make sure the whole community stays healthy."

So, to find out just what everyone is doing in their homes and individual lives, a team of researchers at the University of Kentucky including Kiviniemi and epidemiologist Ann Coker, PhD, has created a survey.

Coker said, "This is real-time public health, and it's exciting from that perspective."

Going through the survey, respondents will answer questions like:

(x) Where you've gotten your information about COVID-19
(x) How likely you feel it is that you might get sick
(x) How effective you feel measures like wearing masks or practicing social distancing really are

From that information, these experts can better tailor their messaging or communication to make it as effective as possible not only to help Kentucky through COVID-19 but in the future as well.

"For us to be able to do effective communication, to tell people what they need to do to stay safe, how they do it effectively and why it's important, we have to understand how people think about these things, how they make decisions, " Kiviniemi said.

Best part of all, the survey is an easy way for everyone to be part of the solution. They want the survey to be as inclusive as possible, and it is open to anyone age 18-89 in the state of Kentucky.

"I think that we all are looking for ways that we can help. You know when we're isolated by ourselves and we're like, 'what can I do,' and this is a way to do something, " Coker explained.

Click on the following link to take the survey:

The survey will take about 15 minutes to complete. The team encourages people to share the survey online using the hashtag #COVIDPreventionProject.