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Longitudinal Study: LSAC
Title: Predictors of COVID testing among Australian youth: Insights from the Longitudinal Study of Australian Children
Authors: Islam, Md Irteja
Chadwick, Verity
Martiniuk, Alexandra
Publication Date: Nov-2021
Keywords: COVID testing
Australian youth
Abstract: Background Testing has played a crucial role in reducing the spread of COVID. Although COVID symptoms tend to be less severe in children and adolescents, a key concern is young people’s role in the transmission of the virus given their highly social lifestyles. In this study, we aimed to identify the predictors associated with COVID testing in Australian youth using data from the Longitudinal Study of Australian Children (LSAC). Methods We used the latest wave 9C1 of the LSAC, where data were collected from 16–21-year-old Australians via an online survey between October and December 2021. In total, 2291 Australian youths responded to the questions about COVID testing and COVID symptom severity. Data was stratified by living with/without parents, and bivariate and logistic regression analyses examined predictor variables (age, sex, country of birth, remoteness, education level, employment, relationship status, number of household members, living with parents, receiving the COVID financial supplement from government and index of relative socio-economic advantage and disadvantage) and their distributions over the outcome variable COVID testing. Results Youths aged 16-17 were more likely to live at home than youths aged 20-21 years. The strongest predictor of COVID testing was living in major cities (regardless of living with or without parents). Changed household composition was significantly associated with COVID testing among the youths living in the parental home. While among the respondents living without their parents, living with multiple household members and low or no cohesion among household members was associated with higher rates of COVID testing. Conclusion Our study revealed young people have been very good at getting tested for COVID. To further incentivise testing in this age group, we should consider providing this age group with continued financial and social support while awaiting the outcome of the test and during any isolation.
DOI: 10.1101/2021.10.31.21265627
Research collection: Journal Articles
Appears in Collections:Journal Articles

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