Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)

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COVID-19 is a respiratory illness caused by a novel coronavirus first identified in late 2019. The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic is disrupting nearly every facet of daily life and claiming lives across the globe.

As leaders grapple with how to respond, RAND experts seek to address and inform policy options and examine how different countries and communities are managing the crisis. Topics include health care capacity, telemedicine, social distancing, countering misinformation, economic effects, school closures, and online learning.

  • Chilean president Sebastián Piñera receives the first shipment of COVID-19 vaccines in Santiago de Chile, Chile, December 24, 2020, photo by Sebastian Rodríguez/Presidencia/Reuters

    Commentary

    Vaccine Nationalism Has Real Economic Consequences

    Dec 30, 2020

    Vaccine nationalism, in which countries prioritize their domestic needs at the expense of others, will have significant global economic consequences. Major economies actually have more to gain by helping to make an effective COVID-19 vaccine widely available globally.

  • Volunteers help at an annual Thanksgiving turkey giveaway, Inglewood, California, November 23, 2020, photo by Mike Blake/Reuters

    Commentary

    COVID-19 Has Offered Opportunities for Communities to Come Together

    Jan 13, 2021

    The past year has been among the most turbulent in recent memory. Might recent crises provide a catalyst for a renewed sense of civic engagement that transcends some of the race and class divisions COVID-19 has exacerbated?

Explore Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)

  • A worried mother holding her baby while working, photo by damircudic/Getty Images

    Multimedia

    Tracking the Effects of COVID-19 on Lives and Livelihoods

    RAND's Shanthi Nataraj draws on key findings from the RAND American Life Panel to explore how the pandemic is affecting Americans' physical and mental health, their daily lives, and their financial well-being.

    Sep 17, 2020

  • The front gate admissions supervisor checks employees' temperatures before the start of their shifts at Golfland Sunsplash water park in Mesa, Arizona, May 15, 2020, photo by Caitlin O'Hara/Reuters

    Report

    COVID-19 Screening in the Workplace

    Workplaces are checking for COVID-19 symptoms verbally, with a paper form or app, with onsite temperature checks, or by combining these approaches. Which methods are likely to detect infection and help employees feel safer? And which are safe, feasible, and least problematic in terms of privacy?

    Sep 17, 2020

  • Sustainable Pharmaceutical Innovation

    Multimedia

    Sustainable Pharmaceutical Innovation for COVID-19 and Other Infectious Diseases

    RAND Europe's Sonja Marjanovic describes the critical success criteria for innovation in infectious disease, antimicrobial, and vaccine research and development.

    Sep 16, 2020

  • Blog

    America's Declining Global Influence, COVID-19 and Schools, Pardoning Snowden: RAND Weekly Recap

    This weekly recap focuses on America's declining status on the world stage, why schools need long-term plans to address COVID-19, what Shinzo Abe's resignation means for the U.S.-Japan alliance, and more.

    Sep 11, 2020

  • Woman in a face mask having her temperature scanned, photo by whyframestudio/Getty Images

    Commentary

    Can Workers' Compensation Help Businesses Reopen More Safely?

    Workers' compensation typically does not cover common infectious diseases like COVID-19. But in the fight against the pandemic, state policymakers might take a fresh look at aspects of labor and business regulation that usually fade into the background and ask if modest changes hold any potential to reduce disease transmission.

    Sep 9, 2020

  • The Future of the Pharmaceutical Industry (Crop)

    Multimedia

    The Future of the Pharmaceutical Industry

    RAND Europe's Sonja Marjanovic explains how changes in society have brought about opportunities for the pharmaceutical industry to innovate to better meet the needs of patients and health care systems.

    Sep 8, 2020

  • Periodical

    Periodical

    RAND Review: September-October 2020

    Feature stories explore how Pardee RAND is helping to shape the future of public policy through its Faculty Leaders Program; the safety and sustainability of the U.S. blood supply; and how telemedicine is changing the delivery of health care.

    Sep 8, 2020

  • A child attends Miami Community Charter School for the first day of class in Flagler City, Florida, August 31, 2020, photo by Matias J. Ocner/Miami Herald/TNS/ABACA/Reuters

    Commentary

    Schools Need to Be Planning for the Next 9 Months, Not the Next 9 Weeks

    Schools cannot simply wait out this pandemic, nor will short-term planning and ad-hoc infrastructure get them successfully through this academic year. If schools are to minimize educational losses, large-scale investments should be made now.

    Sep 8, 2020

  • Blog

    The Evidence on Kids and COVID-19, China's Use of Big Data, Telemedicine: RAND Weekly Recap

    This weekly recap focuses on what we know (and what we don't) about kids and COVID-19, how China is using big data, the future of telemedicine, and more.

    Sep 4, 2020

  • A sushi chef waits for diners as Miami-Dade County allows indoor servicing in restaurants after easing some lockdown measures in Miami, Florida, August 31, 2020, photo by Marco Bello/Reuters

    Commentary

    For Leisure and Hospitality, Weak Recovery Still Looks Like Recession

    By most measures, the workers hardest hit by pandemic shutdowns were those in the leisure and hospitality sector, which includes arts, entertainment, recreation, accommodation, and food services. These jobs, which are still affected by government social distancing regulations, are not all likely to come back before the pandemic truly ends.

    Sep 4, 2020

  • Young Asian boy using laptop with headphones, photo by allensima/Getty Images

    Commentary

    Learning from School Leaders About SEL During a Time of Crisis

    It would be easy for social and emotional learning to fall by the wayside as school leaders work to address students' health, safety, and learning loss during the COVID-19 pandemic. Policymakers and funders should take seriously the perspectives and concerns that school leaders have shared.

    Sep 4, 2020

  • Glass globe sitting on chalk board with crisis and policy written in chalk, photo by courtneyk/Getty Images

    Commentary

    COVID-19 and How Poor Planning Leads to a Lack of Freedom

    The pandemic has made Americans less free, confining us to our homes, and separating us from the people we love and the activities we value. This experience may help people learn the importance of planning to preserving and expanding freedom.

    Sep 4, 2020

  • Woman sitting on her couch having a virtual medical appointment on her laptop, photos by Agrobacter and SDI Productions/Getty Images

    Essay

    What Telemedicine Needs to Succeed Beyond COVID-19

    Virtual doctor visits have become part of the new normal. Since the first COVID-19 stay-at-home orders, Medicare and other payers have relaxed their rules to make it easier for patients to connect to care. But without permanent policy changes, physicians may not continue telemedicine services.

    Sep 2, 2020

  • Instructional assistants help students maintain social distancing as in-person learning resumes at Wilson Primary School in Phoenix, Arizona, August 17, 2020, photo by Cheney Orr/Reuters

    Commentary

    Do Children Really Transmit COVID-19 Less Than Adults? The Evidence Is Questionable

    The theory that children are unlikely to contract or spread COVID-19 may feel reassuring, but it's based on flawed science. Until more is known, adopting aggressive strategies to limit viral spread in schools is the best way to keep students and teachers safe.

    Aug 31, 2020

  • Blog

    Voting in a Pandemic, the U.S. Postal Service, Defunding the Police: RAND Weekly Recap

    This weekly recap focuses on Americans' views about voting in the age of COVID-19, what makes the U.S. Postal Service so essential, why some in law enforcement may be open to “defunding the police,” and more.

    Aug 28, 2020

  • Child wearing a face mask and gloves, holding a binder with Back to School and drawings of coronavirus, photo by Amy Mitchell/Getty Images

    Commentary

    To Reopen Schools Safely, Prepare for New COVID-19 Test Capabilities

    Safely reopening K–12 schools for in-person instruction requires complicated protocols ranging from symptom monitoring to physical distancing, as well as containment of transmission in the community. State policymakers and school leaders could begin planning now to draft, pilot, and evaluate protocols for reopening schools that incorporate rapid testing.

    Aug 28, 2020

  • Industrial Hemp (Cannabis sativa) being grown in Queenstown, MD USA

    Commentary

    Don't Entangle COVID-19 Relief with Cannabis Legalization

    Cannabis legalization is a multifaceted decision that has implications for health, safety, and social equity. Whether legalization could fund COVID-19 relief should not be a major focus of debates.

    Aug 28, 2020

  • News Release

    News Release

    Will Pandemic Concerns Cause Some Voters to Skip 2020 Election? Survey Finds Concerns Vary by Race, Education Levels, ...

    Although most voters say they believe that voting will be safe and that their ballot will be counted despite the coronavirus pandemic, those who question election safety and some who question election integrity appear less likely to vote.

    Aug 27, 2020

  • A voter completes his ballot on the day of the primary election in Louisville, Kentucky, U.S. June 23, 2020, photo by Bryan Woolston/Reuters

    Report

    Voting in a Pandemic: What Americans Think About Safety, Election Integrity, and Preparedness

    As states prepare to conduct elections during the COVID-19 crisis, what are voters' perceptions about safety, election integrity, and the readiness of local officials? And how might these perceptions affect voter turnout in November?

    Aug 27, 2020

  • A person donates blood during a Red Cross and Arizona Diamondbacks baseball team blood drive at Chase Field in Phoenix, April 28, 2020, photo by Ross D. Franklin/AP Images

    Essay

    A Stable Blood Supply Is Critical in the COVID-19 Era

    Millions of lives depend on the U.S. blood supply. But no one knows exactly how much blood is in the system at any given time, or whether it's enough to meet demand. The federal government has no way to collect that data, and hospitals don't share it with each other. What can be done to strengthen the system?

    Aug 27, 2020