An Italian study confirms that over time people are finding it increasingly difficult to comply with and begin to abandon pandemic restrictions. The more difficult the constraints to maintain, the more restrictive the constraints.

According to scientists from Italy, the level of compliance with epidemiological restrictions has decreased in this country since November 2021. The most stringent restrictions were.

In May 2021, Italy imposed regional restrictions based on epidemiological data – the country was divided into red, yellow and white zones. Restrictions ranged from restricting movement at certain hours in the yellow zones to orders to stay home almost all the time in the red zone. Using data from Facebook and Google, scientists have identified fatigue from a pandemic and diaries in 20 Italian provinces. Information from Facebook talked about the mobility of its users, and from Google – about the time spent at home.

The population’s traffic changed at a rate of 0.08%, and the time residents spent outside the home by 0.04%. daily. Overall, during the seven-month period, the level of travel increased at an average rate of over 15%.

However, in the red region, mobility increased by an additional 0.16%. per day, time spent outside increased by an additional 0.04 percent. compared to average values. This means that in the red areas, movement increased by 3% every two weeks. So this data shows that the stricter the restrictions, the more people stop complying with them.

Scientists acknowledge, however, that the data is not about the entire population, but only the users of these sites who share their locations for this. They also noted that the study did not take into account the link between vaccination and compliance with restrictions. Nor did they verify the true impact of the restrictions on the spread of the virus. However, the results may assist in selecting the best outbreak control strategy, should the need arise in the future.

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By analyzing the mobility data of Italian residents from mobile phones, we examined how compliance with covid restrictions varies over time, with different levels of restrictions. Our results show that it is difficult to maintain the effects of restrictions for a long time, especially when they are more stringent.” – Says Letitia Goffin, author of a study published in the journal PLOS Digital Health. “Given that moderate therapeutic measures have been successful in preventing the spread of COVID-19, our study indicates indicates that policy makers should consider the relationship between the effectiveness of restrictions and the possibility of maintaining them” – adds the expert.

More information: https://journals.plos.org/digitalhealth/article?id=10.1371/journal.pdig.0000035

Marek Matakz

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