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Study shows that healthcare is #1 concern among consumers of all generations

Even before COVID-19, new research that uncovered top universal fears in the United States found healthcare is an enduring area of concern

We discovered that the conversations around fear have accelerated, people are more stressed than ever before and this is becoming even more apparent with the current global situation.”
— Rebecca Brooks, Founder and CEO, Alter Agents
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA, UNITED STATES, March 19, 2020 / -- Alter Agents, a full-service market research consultancy, has released new research surrounding consumer fear and anxiety. The study, which was conducted late last year, found that conversations around fear were accelerating even before widespread coverage of COVID-19. American consumers were already experiencing fear and anxiety from a social, political, economic and informational perspective, with healthcare topping the list as the number one universal concern.

"At my firm, we're passionate about understanding what drives people and we've long known that fear and anxiety have large impacts on behavior," said Rebecca Brooks, founder and CEO of Alter Agents. "We set out to do this research and understand exactly how people are feeling about key issues, and what brands need to understand about their audiences in order to be successful. We discovered that the conversations around fear have accelerated, people are more stressed than ever before and this is becoming even more apparent with the current global situation."

The nationally representative study surveyed 1,300 adult respondents. It covers attitudinal topics surrounding fear assessment and ranking, social media and entertainment perceptions, spending behaviors and more, all broken down by specific demographics. Healthcare was a top fear among all age groups, including 30% of Gen Z/millennials and 48% of baby boomers and older. Other fears differed; Gen Z/Millennials and Gen X are concerned about personal finances (30% and 32%, respectively), while older respondents were more worried about crime (26%) and immigration (25%).

The fragmented healthcare system in the United States, as well as questions about future healthcare models (e.g. Medicare for all, cessation of coverage for preexisting conditions), is exacerbating these concerns. Further adding fuel to the fear fire is the ability for the current system to meet expected demands rising from the spread of COVID-19. According to several epidemiological studies, the spread of the virus could put strain on the healthcare system that it is ill-prepared to meet.

Alter Agents will be talking about the study, and the impact of fear on consumer behavior, during a webinar on March 26 at 11 a.m. Pacific time, in partnership with Women in Research (WIRe). Interested parties can register here:

About Alter Agents
Alter Agents is a full-service market research consultancy reimagining research in the age of the promiscuous consumer. With a long history of brand strategy and communications experience, the company focuses on collaborating with brands to reveal consumer needs, priorities, and context. Alter Agents specializes in reframing the context for consumer research to yield powerful insights for its clients, including brand giants such as eBay, Google, Hyundai, Yahoo, Viking River Cruises, and many more. More at @Alter_Agents


Marie Melsheimer
Campbell Consulting
+1 541-815-3951
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