From believers to skeptics: Latent class analysis of COVID-19 protective practices and perceptions among agricultural community members

Josie M Rudolphi, Courtney Cuthbertson, Amandeep Kaur, Jesus N Sarol

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

PURPOSE: This cross-sectional study aimed to identify homogenous groups of agricultural producers and stakeholders based on their perceptions of effectiveness and use of COVID-19 protective behaviors.

METHODS: We conducted an online survey of agricultural producers and stakeholders through Qualtrics. Participants responded to 7 statements about COVID-19 protective behavior effectiveness and 7 statements about participation in COVID-19 protective behaviors in the previous 2 weeks. These statements included handwashing, disinfecting, refraining from touching one's face, covering one's face when coughing/sneezing, staying at home, social distancing, and wearing a face mask. Additional survey sections included demographics and health history. We performed separate latent class analysis (LCA) to identify clusters of agricultural producers' and stakeholders' perceptions and participation in COVID-19-related protective behaviors based on their pattern of responses.

FINDINGS: Based on LCA, participants were distributed as universal believers (33%), social believers (16%), personal believers (26%), moderate believers (17%), and social skeptics (85%) of effectiveness and as low (15%), moderate (40%), and high (45%) adherents of COVID-19 protective behaviors. Those who were female, older, or had underlying health conditions were more likely to be universal believers and highly adherent. High adherence was also more likely among those who lived in urban areas or were not self-employed.

CONCLUSIONS: Results suggest that groups of agricultural producers and stakeholders based on perception of effectiveness and participation in COVID-19 protective behaviors are associated with demographic and health characteristics. Public health campaigns that increase or maintain motivation to comply with protective behaviors should be developed and implemented specific for agricultural populations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of Rural Health
DOIs
StateE-pub ahead of print - Jul 16 2022

Keywords

  • COVID-19
  • rural
  • occupation
  • latent class analysis
  • agriculture

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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