World Social Psychiatry

ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year
: 2021  |  Volume : 3  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 221--227

Fear and Information-Seeking Behavior Related to COVID-19 in Older Indian Adults


Sreelakshmi Vaidyanathan, Suyog Vijay Jaiswal 
 Department of Psychiatry, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Nagpur, Maharashtra, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Sreelakshmi Vaidyanathan
Department of Psychiatry, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Nagpur - 441 108, Maharashtra
India

Background: Elderly, a high-risk population for COVID-19, are further vulnerable to mental health sequelae due to several pandemic-related restrictions. This study aimed to assess fear and information-seeking behavior related to COVID-19 among older Indian adults. Methodology: It was an online, observational cross-sectional study. An open-access e-invite to the questionnaire (on Google forms) was circulated through social media. The form contained sociodemographic details, fear of COVID-19 scale (FCV-19S), and an original questionnaire on information-seeking behavior in COVID-19. Responses of adults ≥60 years of age were noted. Analyses were done with SPSS v20, and Mann–Whitney U test was used to compare the FCV-19S scores among information-seeking variables. Results: A total of 150 completed responses were obtained. Mean age of respondents was 67 ± 5.44 years; median FCV-19S score was 11; 9.33% of respondents had significant fear of COVID-19. TV/Radio (55.3%) followed by newspaper/magazines (40.7%) were the most preferred source of information. Preventive measures (75.3%) and symptoms of disease (70%) were the most sought-after information. Those who spent more time than intended searching for information have significantly higher fear scores (P = 0.025). There was no significant difference in fear score for other parameters of information-seeking behavior and its consequences. Conclusion: Less than 10% of study population of older adults had a significant fear of COVID-19. Information sought is mostly on symptoms of disease, preventive measures, and guidelines and sought through passive sources rather than active searching or in-person. Those with higher fear scores are likely to spend more time searching for information than intended and are less likely to perceive any dysfunction due to said behavior.


How to cite this article:
Vaidyanathan S, Jaiswal SV. Fear and Information-Seeking Behavior Related to COVID-19 in Older Indian Adults.World Soc Psychiatry 2021;3:221-227


How to cite this URL:
Vaidyanathan S, Jaiswal SV. Fear and Information-Seeking Behavior Related to COVID-19 in Older Indian Adults. World Soc Psychiatry [serial online] 2021 [cited 2022 Dec 6 ];3:221-227
Available from: https://www.worldsocpsychiatry.org/article.asp?issn=2667-1077;year=2021;volume=3;issue=3;spage=221;epage=227;aulast=Vaidyanathan;type=0