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COVID-19: Original Article
Associations Between Compliance With Non-pharmaceutical Interventions and Social-distancing Policies in Korea During the COVID-19 Pandemic
Yu Seong Hwang, Heui Sug Jo
J Prev Med Public Health. 2021;54(4):230-237.   Published online June 16, 2021
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AbstractAbstract AbstractSummary PDFSupplementary Material
This study explored changes in individuals’ behavior in response to social distancing (SD) levels and the “no gatherings of more than 5 people” (NGM5) rule in Korea during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.
Using survey data from the COVID-19 Behavior Tracker, exploratory factor analysis extracted 3 preventive factors: maintenance of personal hygiene, avoiding going out, and avoiding meeting people. Each factor was used as a dependent variable. The chi-square test was used to compare differences in distributions between categorical variables, while binary logistic regression was performed to identify factors associated with high compliance with measures to prevent transmission.
In men, all 3 factors were significantly associated with lower compliance. Younger age groups were associated with lower compliance with maintenance of personal hygiene and avoiding meeting people. Employment status was significantly associated with avoiding going out and avoiding meeting people. Residence in the capital area was significantly associated with higher compliance with personal hygiene and avoiding venturing out. Increasing SD levels were associated with personal hygiene, avoiding going out, and avoiding meeting people. The NGM5 policy was not significantly associated with compliance.
SD levels, gender, age, employment status, and region had explanatory power for compliance with non-pharmaceutical interventions (NPIs). Strengthening social campaigns to inspire voluntary compliance with NPIs, especially focused on men, younger people, full-time workers, and residents of the capital area is recommended. Simultaneously, efforts need to be made to segment SD measures into substrategies with detailed guidance at each level.
Korean summary
이 연구에서는 대한민국 정부가 COVID-19 방역 정책으로 시행한 ‘사회적 거리두기 단계 조절’과 ‘5인 이상 집합 금지 조치’에 대한 개인의 순응도를 파악하였다. 이를 위해 영국 임페리얼 대학이 2020년 4월부터 2021년 4월까지 24회에 걸쳐 한국인 총 13,300명에게 개인 행동을 조사한 공개 데이터를 분석하였다. 그 결과, 더 높은 수준의 사회적 거리두기 단계 – 특히 다중이용시설들이 폐쇄되는 2.5 단계 -에서 비약물적 중재 조치의 순응도와 더 강한 상관관계를 보였다. 그러나 5인 이상 집합금지는 순응도와 유의한 상관관계를 보이지 않아 사람들이 모임 인원을 제한할 뿐 지속적으로 모임을 하는 것으로 해석된다. 연령, 성별, 직업 구분, 거주지와 같은 인구-사회학적 특성들이 순응도에 영향을 주는 것으로 나타났으므로, 낮은 순응도를 보이는 인구집단의 순응도를 고취시킬 수 있도록 세부적인 전략 (예: 재택근무, 온라인회의, 온라인 수업 권장 등)이 필요하다.


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JPMPH : Journal of Preventive Medicine and Public Health