Democracy and Mobility: A Preliminary Analysis of Global Adherence to Non-Pharmaceutical Interventions for COVID-19

18 Pages Posted: 7 Apr 2020

See all articles by Cristina M. Herren

Cristina M. Herren

Harvard University - Harvard Medical School

Tenley K. Brownwright

Pennsylvania State University - Center for Infectious Disease Dynamics; Pennsylvania State University - Department of Biology

Erin Y. Liu

McGill University - Epidemiology, Biostatistics, & Occupational Health

Nisrine El Amiri

SickKids Hospital - Child Health Evaluative Sciences Program

Maimuna S. Majumder

Boston Children's Hospital - Computational Health Informatics Program; Harvard University - Harvard Medical School

Date Written: April 7, 2020

Abstract

In the absence of vaccines or therapeutics, and with cases of COVID-19 continuing to grow each day, most countries are relying on non-pharmaceutical interventions (NPIs) to reduce the spread of SARS-CoV-2. The goal of NPIs – decreasing mobility in order to decrease contact – comes with competing socioeconomic costs and incentives that are not well-understood. Using Google’s Community Mobility data, we visualized changes in mobility and explored the effect of economic, social, and governmental factors on mobility via regression. We found decreases in mobility for all movement categories except in residential areas; these changes corresponded strongly with country-specific outbreak trajectory. Mobility increased with GDP per capita, though this relationship varied among movement categories. Finally, countries with more authoritarian governments were more responsive with respect to mobility changes as local case counts increased; however, these countries were also less likely to report mobility data to Google. ​These preliminary findings suggest that country-specific outbreak trajectory, GDP per capita, and democracy index may be important indicators in assessing a given population’s adherence to NPIs.

Note: Funding: This work was supported in part by grant T32HD040128 from the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, National Institutes of Health.

Conflict of Interest: The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Keywords: coronavirus, COVID-19, social distancing, non-pharmaceutical interventions

Suggested Citation

M. Herren, Cristina and K. Brownwright, Tenley and Y. Liu, Erin and El Amiri, Nisrine and Majumder, Maimuna, Democracy and Mobility: A Preliminary Analysis of Global Adherence to Non-Pharmaceutical Interventions for COVID-19 (April 7, 2020). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3570206 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3570206

Cristina M. Herren (Contact Author)

Harvard University - Harvard Medical School ( email )

25 Shattuck St
Boston, MA 02115
United States

Tenley K. Brownwright

Pennsylvania State University - Center for Infectious Disease Dynamics ( email )

PA
United States

Pennsylvania State University - Department of Biology ( email )

PA 16802
United States

Erin Y. Liu

McGill University - Epidemiology, Biostatistics, & Occupational Health ( email )

845 Sherbrook Street West
Montreal, QC H3A 0G4
Canada

Nisrine El Amiri

SickKids Hospital - Child Health Evaluative Sciences Program ( email )

Toronto, Ontario
Canada

Maimuna Majumder

Boston Children's Hospital - Computational Health Informatics Program ( email )

United States

Harvard University - Harvard Medical School ( email )

25 Shattuck St
Boston, MA 02115
United States

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