COVID-19 Pandemic: Insights from RAND

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused widespread illness and death, economic devastation, day-to-day challenges, and long-term uncertainty. RAND research and analysis provide insights on the effects of this monumental crisis.

Since the pandemic began, RAND expertise has helped leaders and decisionmakers tackle important issues related to health care responses; reopening schools and businesses while preventing further disease spread; and how to address hesitancy and misinformation about vaccines.

And while much of the world has shifted its focus from pandemic response to pandemic recovery, many important questions remain. How has the COVID-19 era exacerbated inequities in health, economic, and education outcomes? What is known about the mental health toll of the crisis? Are there lessons that can help prevent future pandemics?

Answers to these questions may help communities, businesses, and individuals recover long after the worst of the pandemic has passed.

Vaccinations, Health Care, and Well-Being

  • Medical staff members in an intensive care unit assist a patient suffering from COVID-19, Amman, Jordan March 23, 2021, photo by Muath Freij/Reuters

    Report

    Exploration of Early COVID-19 Responses in Select Middle East Nations

    Mar 24, 2022

    Prior to the pandemic, many countries in the Middle East struggled with health care capacity and access. COVID-19 placed significant additional strain on health care delivery in the region. What common challenges did Iran, Jordan, Lebanon, Qatar, and Tunisia face in their pandemic responses?

Workers and the Economy

  • Workers stand in line to cast ballots for a union election at Amazon's JFK8 distribution center, in the Staten Island borough of New York City, March 25, 2022, photo by Brendan McDermid/Reuters

    Commentary

    A Whole New, Same World

    Apr 20, 2022

    Workers in the United States have emerged from the pandemic with new preferences and demands, but they still lack the power to get what they want. By any meaningful measure, employers are still in charge.

Education

Vulnerable Populations

  • President Joe Biden signs the American Rescue Plan in the Oval Office, at the White House in Washington, D.C., March, 11, 2021, photo by Doug Mills/Pool/Sipa USA/Reuters

    Commentary

    Temporary Safety-Net Policies Prevented Mass Insurance Loss During the Pandemic

    Dec 13, 2021

    Although it provided a foundation, the ACA alone could not have absorbed the effects of the pandemic's sudden job losses on health care coverage. Temporary expansions to the safety net enacted by Congress also were necessary to stem coverage loss. As the pandemic continues, policymakers will want to keep safety-net provisions as available policy options.

National Security and International Affairs

  • A collage of the COVID-19 virus, armed terror groups, and a biological response team

    Report

    Implications of the Pandemic for Terrorist Interest in Biological Weapons

    May 31, 2022

    Some policymakers and analysts have expressed concern that weaknesses in responses to the COVID-19 pandemic will motivate terrorists to seek biological weapons. While the prospect of the Islamic State and al-Qaeda pursuing biological weapons is not zero, it is unlikely, given the difficulties involved and the availability of simpler alternatives.

View all of RAND's COVID-19 related work