Determinants of worry using the SARS-CoV-19 worry (CoV-Wo) scale among United States residents

Lauren Dayton, Kristin Schneider, Justin C. Strickland, Carl Latkin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We sought to develop a brief Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2-related worry (CoV-Wo) scale to understand COVID-19-related worry among adults in the United States. We also aimed to model key determinants of worry in the early stage of the COVID-19 pandemic in the United States. A total of 806 participants completed an online survey in late March 2020. Exploratory and confirmatory factor analyses assessed scale structure. Factor analysis stratified by depression was used to assess measurement invariance. Linear regression models examined COVID-19-related worry determinants. The CoV-Wo scale exhibited good reliability (α = 0.80) and a two-factor structure: health (α = 0.83) and resources (α = 0.71). The full scale and both subscales were higher among participants who stopped working due to COVID-19 and those with depression. Perception of quality medical care if infected with COVID-19 was associated with reduced worry. The CoV-Wo scale is a low burden assessment of COVID-19-related worry, that captures common worries in domains affected by COVID-19 and can be used to develop psychosocial resources.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1487-1504
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of community psychology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Jul 2021


  • community psychology
  • coronavirus
  • economic status
  • employment
  • food security
  • mental health
  • socioeconomic factors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology


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