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Longitudinal Study of Hurricane Preparedness Behaviors: Influence of Collective Efficacy

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  15 March 2021

Holly B Herberman Mash*
Affiliation:
Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress, Department of Psychiatry, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, MD, USA Henry M. Jackson Foundation for the Advancement of Military Medicine, Bethesda, MD, USA
Carol S Fullerton
Affiliation:
Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress, Department of Psychiatry, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, MD, USA
Joshua C Morganstein
Affiliation:
Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress, Department of Psychiatry, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, MD, USA
Mary C Vance
Affiliation:
Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress, Department of Psychiatry, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, MD, USA Henry M. Jackson Foundation for the Advancement of Military Medicine, Bethesda, MD, USA
Leming Wang
Affiliation:
Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress, Department of Psychiatry, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, MD, USA
Alexander G Liu
Affiliation:
Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress, Department of Psychiatry, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, MD, USA Henry M. Jackson Foundation for the Advancement of Military Medicine, Bethesda, MD, USA
Britany Mullins-Hussain
Affiliation:
Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress, Department of Psychiatry, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, MD, USA Henry M. Jackson Foundation for the Advancement of Military Medicine, Bethesda, MD, USA
Robert J Ursano
Affiliation:
Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress, Department of Psychiatry, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, MD, USA
*
Corresponding author: Holly B Herberman Mash, Email: holly.herberman-mash.ctr@usuhs.edu

Abstract

Objective:

Community characteristics, such as collective efficacy, a measure of community strength, can affect behavioral responses following disasters. We measured collective efficacy 1 month before multiple hurricanes in 2005, and assessed its association to preparedness 9 months following the hurricane season.

Methods:

Participants were 631 Florida Department of Health workers who responded to multiple hurricanes in 2004 and 2005. They completed questionnaires that were distributed electronically approximately 1 month before (6.2005-T1) and 9 months after (6.2006-T2) several storms over the 2005 hurricane season. Collective efficacy, preparedness behaviors, and socio-demographics were assessed at T1, and preparedness behaviors and hurricane-related characteristics (injury, community-related damage) were assessed at T2. Participant ages ranged from 21-72 (M(SD) = 48.50 (10.15)), and the majority were female (78%).

Results:

In linear regression models, univariate analyses indicated that being older (B = 0.01, SE = 0.003, P < 0.001), White (B = 0.22, SE = 0.08, P < 0.01), and married (B = 0.05, SE = 0.02, p < 0.001) was associated with preparedness following the 2005 hurricanes. Multivariate analyses, adjusting for socio-demographics, preparedness (T1), and hurricane-related characteristics (T2), found that higher collective efficacy (T1) was associated with preparedness after the hurricanes (B = 0.10, SE = 0.03, P < 0.01; and B = 0.47, SE = 0.04, P < 0.001 respectively).

Conclusion:

Programs enhancing collective efficacy may be a significant part of prevention practices and promote preparedness efforts before disasters.

Type
Original Research
Copyright
© Society for Disaster Medicine and Public Health, Inc. 2021

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