Marshall, A. T., Hackman, D. A., Baker, F. C., Breslin, F. J., Brown, S. A., Dick, A. S., … & Sowell, E. R. (2022). Resilience to COVID-19: Socioeconomic Disadvantage Associated With Positive Caregiver–Youth Communication and Youth Preventative Actions. Frontiers in public health, 10, 734308.
Socioeconomic disadvantage is associated with larger COVID-19 disease burdens and pandemic-related economic impacts. We utilized the longitudinal Adolescent Brain Cognitive Development Study to understand how family- and neighborhood-level socioeconomic disadvantage relate to disease burden, family communication, and preventative responses to the pandemic in over 6,000 youth-caregiver dyads. Data were collected at three timepoints (May–August 2020). Here, we show that both family- and neighborhood-level disadvantage were associated with caregivers’ reports of greater family COVID-19 disease burden, less perceived exposure risk, more frequent caregiver-youth conversations about COVID-19 risk/prevention and reassurance, and greater youth preventative behaviors. Families with more socioeconomic disadvantage may be adaptively incorporating more protective strategies to reduce emotional distress and likelihood of COVID-19 infection. The results highlight the importance of caregiver-youth communication and disease-preventative practices for buffering the economic and disease burdens of COVID-19, along with policies and programs that reduce these burdens for families with socioeconomic disadvantage.