Researchers randomly surveyed more than 1,000 people from across Maryland who ask about their social distance practices and how often they get out of the house.
They found that spending more time in public places was strongly associated with obtaining COVID-19, compared to those who practiced strict external social distance.
“We actually reported the data in person,” said Sunil Solomon of the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. “So we can really see the social distinction, the practice of different population subgroups.”
From there, researchers were able to link some behavioral practices with a history of testing positive for COVID-19.
“It really adds frequency capability,” Solomon said. “So if you went to the grocery store once, versus if you went to the grocery store seven or more times, there was definitely a difference in your risk of exposure.”
The results of the study suggest that people who practice strict outdoor social practice are 1/10 as likely to contract the virus, while those who spend more time inside public spaces or on public transport Were four times more likely to contract the virus.
“Because these are two situations where it can be difficult to socially distance,” Solomon said.
81 percent of those polled 65 and older always practiced social disturbances, while only 58 percent of people between the ages of 18 and 24 reported that they always practiced social distance.
With the new school year underway, Johns Hopkins researchers plan to run another study from 15 September.
The study will look at how many people are sending students back to school, how big are these class sizes and how are they going to affect transmission.
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