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CUNY Graduate School of Public Health conducts COVID-19 research

Courtesy of CUNY
Courtesy of CUNY

A survey conducted by the CUNY Graduate School of Public Health and Health Policy reported that 36% of New York City households have at least one person who has lost employment due to the COVID-19, or novel coronavirus, pandemic.

The survey applicant pool consisted of 14.7% from Long Island, 45.3% from the five boroughs and 40% from upstate New York.

After businesses were ordered to shut down a few weeks ago, some businesses resorted to laying off their employees or shutting down for good. 

Unemployment hit lower-income individuals the hardest. Those who earn $50,000 or less annually makeup 41% of those who have lost jobs, while higher-income individuals with incomes of $100,000 or more make up 24% of those who are now unemployed. 

Although the federal government is offering financial assistance, the CUNY Graduate study found that 56% of NYC residents did not think it wais sufficient enough to manage the COVID-19 crisis. 

More than two in five New Yorkers said they are concerned about paying their rent or mortgage, and the majority of them fear they will be evicted. 

Fears and anxieties of contracting the virus have also increased because of social distancing and self-quarantine protocols. 

The study stated that 43% of New Yorkers feel socially disconnected and isolated, 44% said they feel nervous or anxious at least 3-4 days a week and 35% reported feelings of hopelessness or depression. 

One in eight New Yorkers has someone in their household who is sick with symptoms of COVID-19. The number of New Yorkers who think they have a high chance of getting sick with the virus has increased by 16% within a week, totaling 55% currently. 

“Younger New Yorkers believe they have a significantly higher chance of getting sick than their older counterparts, and this finding has been consistent for the last three weeks,” Dr. Scott Ratzan, a lecturer at the CUNY School of Public Health said.

Ratzan explained that although older people are more likely to get the virus, the anxieties of younger people could be because they are more tuned in to public health communication messages as compared to older folks.

Other key findings from the CUNY Graduate study stated that 62% of NYC residents would take a vaccine for coronavirus if it was available and 53% believe that asking New Yorkers to self-quarantine for two weeks after leaving the state is helpful in containing the spread. 

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