Preventive Health Survey
The COVID-19 Preventive Health Survey is designed to help policymakers and health researchers better monitor and understand people’s knowledge, attitudes and practices about COVID-19 to improve communications and their response to the pandemic. This survey is conducted in partnership with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Johns Hopkins University (JHU), with advice from the World Health Organization.
The survey is designed to provide valuable information to help understand knowledge, attitudes and practices related to preventative behaviors without trading off the privacy of the people who took the survey. Facebook does not share who took the survey with MIT, and they do not share individual survey responses with us.
With over 2 billion people on Facebook, we are in a unique position to support public health research. We have partnered with trusted academic and nonprofit institutions to build a research network to address some of the world's greatest humanitarian issues. We're currently using our platform to deploy a preventative health survey to support ongoing COVID-19 research and help inform public health decisions and communication.
In addition to publicly available data offered by MIT and JHU, academic and nonprofit researchers may request access to non-public, non-aggregated survey data for their research.
Who Uses the Preventative Health Survey
Policymakers and Public Health Officials
New insights can help policymakers understand the effectiveness of various policies, such as stay-at-home orders, physical distancing, wearing a mask and washing hands. The data can also help public health officials adjust communications to be most effective for their communities. Policymakers are leveraging Johns Hopkins University's KAP COVID dashboard which presents data from the Preventive Health Survey. Check out the dashboard here.
Researchers can use the data to study COVID-19, such as how the pandemic is affecting behaviors over time, and understand which areas may be at risk of an outbreak based on population characteristics, preventative behaviors and plans to visit public spaces.
Risk Perception, Preventive Behavior, and Medical Care Avoidance among American Older Adults During the COVID-19 Pandemic
This study investigated the predictors of risk perception and its effect on older adults’ preventive behavior and/or medical care avoidance during the COVID-19 pandemic. The study found that significant predictors of higher risk perception were female gender, older age, poorer health, city residency, personally knowing someone who had COVID-19, and correct knowledge of vaccine/treatment. Higher risk perception was subsequently associated with higher frequency/probability of practicing preventive behavior and/or avoiding medical care. Knowledge had the strongest path coefficient with risk perception. Ultimately, disseminating correct information to older adults could help them evaluate infection risk accurately and educational programs on the precautions implemented at clinical settings to ensure patient safety may encourage older adults to seek timely medical care.
In the News
Access to Survey Data
Aggregate datasets and dashboards are available on the MIT survey website and the JHU survey website. For researchers interested in access to non-aggregate data, learn more here.