More LA County residents are hungry during the pandemic

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As the ramifications of the COVID-19 pandemic started to kick in earlier this spring, researchers with the USC Dornsife Spatial Sciences Institute (SSI) and the Keck School of Medicine of USC began tracking indications of food insecurity in Los Angeles County -- what happens when someone doesn't have enough money for food.

Under the leadership of Kayla de la Haye, assistant professor of preventive medicine with the Keck School of Medicine of USC, a team of USC scholars in public health, psychology, health policy, data science and geographic information science have been working with the Los Angeles County Emergency Food Security Branch to better understand the risk factors and health consequences of food insecurity, which is being exacerbated by the pandemic.

The research team has found that the biggest risk factors for food insecurity during the COVID-19 pandemic were having a low household income, being unemployed and being a young adult. People between the ages of 18 and 30 were most at risk, while those 65 or older were the least. They have also determined that being a single parent increased the risk of experiencing food insecurity.

Read more about their work in this article in The Conversation.

The SSI researchers who are contributing to this project include John P. Wilson, Ph.D., professor and SSI founding director; Kenan Li, Ph.D., SSI research scientist; and Michelle Livings, Population, Health and Place Ph.D. student.





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