Karimy M, Bastami F, Sharifat R, Heydarabadi AB, Hatamzadeh N, Pakpour AH, Cheraghian B, Zamani-Alavijeh F, Jasemzadeh M, Araban M
BMC Public Health 21 (1) 1934 [2021-10-24; online 2021-10-24]
Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic has become one of the biggest challenges to global health and economy. The present study aimed to explore the factors related to preventive health behaviors during the COVID-19 pandemic in Khuzestan Province, South of Iran, using the Health Belief Model (HBM). The present cross-sectional study was conducted in the period between July 2020 and September 2020. A total of 1090 people from Khuzestan province participated in the study. The data collection method included a multistage cluster sampling method with a random selection of provincial of health centers. The questionnaire collected socio-demographic information and HBM constructs (e.g., perceived susceptibility, perceived severity, perceived benefits and barriers, cues to action, and COVID-19 preventive behaviors). Data were analyzed using ANOVA, t-test, hierarchical multiple linear regression, and SPSS version 22. The mean age of the participants was 35.53 ± 11.53, more than half of them were female (61.6%) and married (65.3). The results showed that 27% of the variance in the COVID-19 preventive behaviors was explained by HBM constructs. The regression analysis indicated that female gender (β = 0.11), perceived benefits (β = 0.10), perceived barriers (β = - 0.18), external cues to action (β = 0.25), and internal cues to action (β = 0.12) were significantly associated with COVID-19 preventive behaviors (p < 0.05). Designing an educational intervention on the basis of HBM might be considered as a framework for the correction of beliefs and adherence to COVID-19 behavior. Health information campaigns need to (1) emphasize the benefits of preventive behaviors including avoiding the likelihood of getting a chronic disease and complications of the disease, (2) highlight the tips and advice to overcome the barriers (3) provide cues to action by means of showing various reminders in social media (4) focusing on adoption of COVID-19-related preventive behaviors, especially among men.