Seniors not more likely to take virus precautions versus general population, poll finds


Seniors not more likely to take virus precautions versus general population, poll finds

According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, more Americans are taking preventative measures to prevent COVID-19 infection and spread. This is according to a new survey just released. 

A national sample was taken from March 11 to 15, polling 1216 adults. Questions inquired about the respondent’s awareness and worry over the coronavirus outbreak. KFF then compared the results to a previous survey conducted in February. 

How people are preparing and taking caution


Many report taking various measures to prepare for and protect against coronavirus. There are few differences comparing by age and health status despite varying risk levels across the population.


The study finds that the elderly and those that live in a household where someone has a serious health condition are not more likely than other groups to report taking various precautions. This is in spite of the fact that they are among the groups most at risk of developing serious complications if infected with coronavirus

The poll surveyed various ways that people have made various precautions in response to the viral outbreak. Among those that have taken at least one precaution, the study finds that 67 percent of the general population has taken at least one precaution. That compares to only 63 percent of those over the age of 60, and 64 percent among those over the age of 60 and with someone in their household with a chronic condition. 

Increased risk for the elderly and health compromised population

The Chinese CDC reports a death rate as high as 14.8 percent among those aged 80 or over. Similarly elevated rates are observed between others over the age of 60 and those with underlying or compromising health conditions. This compares to a death rate in general that hovers around 1 percent. 

How the at-risk senior and compromised populations should react

Those at greatest risk should be taking all of the necessary precautions to prevent getting infected with the coronavirus. This Chosen Family article outlines ways that elders and their caregivers can prepare adequately and engage seniors that are stuck at home. It also includes some vital Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and greater Delaware Valley resources too. 

Consider our emergency preparedness checklist as well for families and caregivers.

Other key poll findings: 


  1. Around 62 percent said they were worried that they or a family member would get sick. This finding is in contrast to the 56 percent of Americans who said they were “not too concerned” or “not at all concerned” about COVID-19 in KFF’s previous coronavirus poll.
  2. More than a third of respondents said they were concerned that they wouldn’t be able to afford testing or treatment for COVID-19.
  3. 53 percent of workers shared concerns about losing their income through reduced hours or work closures. 
  4. Many reported taking preventive measures to help prevent the spread of the virus. For example, 42 percent reported canceling or changing travel plans a marked increase from the previous poll of 13 percent. 
  5. Additional preventive measures reported include:
  • Avoiding large groups and gatherings (40 percent)
  • Stocking up on supplies including food and medications (35 percent)
  • Staying home from school or work (26 percent)
  • Buying or wearing a protective mask (12 percent)
  1. Most respondents knew that individuals who think they may have COVID-19 should stay home and call their doctor. However, a quarter of respondents thought they should immediately visit an urgent care center or the emergency room. 

The help of home care in a crisis

Help take the confusion out of care for yourself or your loved one in need. By partnering with a home care agency like Chosen Family, you can count on well-trained and compassionate home health aides and caregivers to keep your senior loved one safe. 

The best providers of senior home care like Chosen Family ensure that they have the right protocols and emergency procedures in place for difficult and quickly changing health challenges like the coronavirus outbreak. We partner closely with family and elders in need to foster a healthy environment at home while assisting to adequately prepare. 



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