COVID-19 Research Initiatives in the HRS International Network

HRS COVID-19 Data Resources

HRS added COVID-19-related questions to the 2020 core interview (Section COV) and to the psychosocial self-administered questionnaire (pages 36-43). In addition, a Contextual Data Resource on state-level COVID-19 policies has been added as part of the HRS restricted data products. A supplementary 2021 COVID-19 Mailout Survey provides a wide range of information related to respondents' experiences of the pandemic.

Resources from the HRS International Family of Studies


ELSA developed a survey about thirty minutes in length to be administered to the complete ELSA cohort in June and again in September/October 2020. It is intended primarily as an online assessment with CATI for people who are unable to complete the study online. The expected response is 6,500-7,000 and preliminary data from phase 1 should be available in September.



The LASI-DAD project team is conducting phone interviews in India to assess the health and socioeconomic effects of COVID-19 on LASI-DAD households. With this survey, the team strives to measure individual respondents’ perceptions, attitudes, and behavioral reactions related to the pandemic. The survey targets one randomly selected adult male and one randomly selected adult female from each household. The survey takes about 15 minutes to administer and will be conducted via phone call every two months starting from May 2020. As we plan to re-interview the same respondents over a one-year time period, we will monitor the course of the pandemic carefully and adapt the instrument, as needed, to ensure that it is filling high-priority knowledge gaps. To ensure national representation and high-quality data collection, the instrument and consent are translated into 12 languages: Hindi, Kannada, Malayalam, Gujarati, Tamil, Punjabi, Urdu, Bengali, Assamese, Odiya, Marathi, and Telugu. All interviews are conducted in respondents’ local languages to ensure respondent comprehension and comfort. With this nationally representative sample, we strive to monitor the nationwide prevalence of COVID-19 symptoms, adoption of disease avoidance behaviors, rates of economic hardships and job loss, receipt of social protection benefits, food security, and the mental health of households.


ELSI-Brazil obtained an extra grant from the Ministry of Health to conduct telephone interviews about COVID 19. This short interview included questions about the diagnosis of the disease, carrying out confirmatory tests, adopting preventive measures, using health services and a few questions about mental health. The first series of telephone interviews was held between May 26 and June 8 with approximately 6000 participants of ELSI. Two new interviews are scheduled to take place in July and August.