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Americans Showing Hesitancy Toward COVID-19 Testing

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 16, 2020 -- Three in four Americans who believed they needed a COVID-19 test report that they either did not get one or delayed getting one, according to the results of a survey released by Quest Diagnostics.

An online survey of 2,050 U.S. adults was conducted by The Harris Poll on behalf of Quest Diagnostics between Nov. 10 and 12, 2020.

According to the results of the survey, reasons cited for avoiding or delaying a COVID-19 test included concerns about exposure to the virus (30 percent), thinking it was very unlikely they had COVID-19 (21 percent), concerns over having to quarantine while waiting for results or if they were positive (15 percent), and cost (15 percent). Avoiding or delaying testing was more common among Hispanic/Latinx adults (83 percent) versus Whites (non-Hispanic; 72 percent) and Blacks (72 percent). The results of the survey also confirmed previous findings that the majority of U.S. adults (60 percent) have skipped or delayed in-person medical treatments or appointments during the COVID-19 pandemic.

"With a vaccine likely not making its way to the general public until spring at the earliest, the health care community needs to do a better job of helping Americans get back to routine care now," Harvey W. Kaufman, M.D., head of the Health Trends Research Program for Quest Diagnostics, said in a statement. "Early diagnosis can save lives and putting off preventative care and chronic disease treatment could make the difference between life and death."

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Posted: December 2020

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