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Abstract

In the emergency situation of an ongoing global pandemic, disease prevention behaviour is essential. The majority of studies assess preventive behaviour through relevant unidimensional questions, but this approach is not necessarily the best way to conceptualize prevention, as health maintenance guidelines cover several different areas of possible individual precautionary and preventive practices. The aim of the study is the development and validation of a multidimensional COVID-19 prevention behaviour scale for the Hungarian speaking population (Covid-19-PBS). The items address major aspects related to preventive behaviour towards COVID-19 inspired by preliminary pandemic studies and the WHO prevention recommendations. 612 eligible female individuals were included in the study; the sample was recruited from the Hungarian general population, and participants were between the ages of 18 and 65 years old. According to preliminary studies women are more likely to engage proactively in prevention behaviour; they perceive the risk of a disease more profoundly, and even disease information seeking was more prevalent among women. An exploratory factor analysis was performed for this new scale, followed by a confirmatory factor analysis. According to our results, the model fit indices are adequate (CFI= .928, RMSEA= .064). Cronbach’s alpha was used to examine the reliability of the factors; the internal validity of the scale is good (α = .78). The final instrument contains 11 items with responses scored on a 4-point Likert scale and 3 domains: general hygiene, social distancing, and COVID-19 information-seeking behaviour. Our results have revealed that the new scale has good psychometric properties and may be a useful instrument for assessing COVID-19 preventive behaviour across women. This tool can be useful for professionals in order to develop more effective and targeted prevention programs especially in the female population, as the instrument was validated only in women up to this stage. This scale can serve the purpose of improving individual and collective adjustment to prevention regulations during the epidemic.

Note on the Author

Kinga Kalcza-Janosi has a PhD in Psychology, is a licensed Clinical Psychologist, lecturer, and a researcher at the Department of Applied Psychology, Faculty of Psychology and Education Sciences, Babes-Bolyai University in Cluj Napoca, Romania. She studies various topics in the field of clinical and health psychology. Address for correspondence: 128 Boulevard 21 December 1989, Cluj-Napoca, Cluj 400603; Tel.: +40264-445206; E-mail address: kinga.kalcza-janosi@ubbcluj.ro; ORCID ID: Kinga Kálcza Jánosi: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-3887-8041

Susana Jancso-Farcas has a PhD in Psychology, is a lecturer and a researcher at the Department of Applied Psychology, Faculty of Psychology and Education Sciences, Babes-Bolyai University in Cluj Napoca, Romania.

Kinga Szabo is Senior Assistant Professor and teaches work psychology and creativity at the Babes-Bolyai University, Romania. Her research interests include coaching and the psychological determinants of creative behavior.

Ibolya Kotta has a PhD in Psychology, is a licensed Clinical Psychologist and Psychotherapist, is a lecturer and a researcher at the Department of Applied Psychology, Faculty of Psychology and Education Sciences, Babes-Bolyai University in Cluj Napoca, Romania.

Eszter Enikő Marschalkó has a PhD in Psychology, is a lecturer and a researcher at the Department of Applied Psychology, Faculty of Psychology and Education Sciences, Babes-Bolyai University in Cluj Napoca, Romania.

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