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“People play it down and tell me it can’t kill people, but I know people are dying each day”. Children’s health literacy relating to a global pandemic (COVID-19); an international cross sectional study

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Bray, L, Carter, B, Blake, L, Saron, H, Kirton, JA, Robichaud, F, Avila, M, Ford, K, Nafria, B, Forsner, M, Nilsson, S, Chelkowski, AR, Middleton, A, Rullander, A-C, Mattsson, J and Protheroe, J 2021 , '“People play it down and tell me it can’t kill people, but I know people are dying each day”. Children’s health literacy relating to a global pandemic (COVID-19); an international cross sectional study' , PL o S One, vol. 16, no. 2 , pp. 1-17 , doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0246405.

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Abstract

The aim of this study was to examine aspects of children’s health literacy; the informationsources they were accessing, their information preferences, their perceived understandingof and their reported information needs in relation to COVID-19. An online survey for children aged 7–12 years of age and parent/caregivers from the UK, Sweden, Brazil, Spain,Canada and Australia was conducted between 6th of April and the 1st of June 2020. The surveys included demographic questions and both closed and open questions focussing onaccess to and understanding of COVID-19 information. Descriptive statistics and qualitativecontent analysis procedures were conducted. The findings show that parents are the mainsource of information for children during the pandemic in most countries (89%, n = 347),except in Sweden where school was the main source of information. However, in manycases parents chose to shield, filter or adapt their child’s access to information aboutCOVID-19, especially in relation to the death rates within each country. Despite this, children in this study reported knowing that COVID-19 was deadly and spreads quickly. Thispaper argues for a community rather than individual approach to addressing children’shealth literacy needs during a pandemic.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Bray, L and Carter, B and Blake, L and Saron, H and Kirton, JA and Robichaud, F and Avila, M and Ford, K and Nafria, B and Forsner, M and Nilsson, S and Chelkowski, AR and Middleton, A and Rullander, A-C and Mattsson, J and Protheroe, J
Journal or Publication Title: PL o S One
Publisher: United States
ISSN: 1932-6203
DOI / ID Number: 10.1371/journal.pone.0246405
Copyright Information:

Copyright: © 2021 Bray et al. Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

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