Creighton University

Financial stress higher than normal during pandemic

Knowing that you are not in this alone is important to keep in mind as you move forward
9-Apr-2020 1:10 PM EDT, by Creighton University

Newswise — OMAHA, Neb. (April 9, 2020) Money continues to be the leading cause of stress in America, and the COVID-19 pandemic is only adding to the financial stress on families due to record high unemployment, says Julie Kalkowski, executive director of the Financial Hope Collaborative at Creighton University. Before the pandemic, 49% of Americans lived paycheck to paycheck, according to a recent survey from First National Bank of Omaha.   

Kalkowski has dedicated her career to helping financially challenged people achieve financial stability.

“The pervasive financial stress the majority of Americans feel is now on steroids as most Americans did not have savings before this crisis hit,” said Kalkowski. “Knowing that you are not in this alone is important to keep in mind as you move forward.”

She manages a program in Creighton’s Heider College of Business that builds support and accountability through the education of individuals on the psychology of money, tracking expenses, saving for emergencies and repairing credit.

Kalkowski recommends the following to help individuals reduce financial anxiety both during and after the COVID-19 pandemic:

Don’t panic. Individuals can find comfort in knowing they are not in this pandemic alone. Avoid using credit cards and payday loans to alleviate debt ─ the high interest rates can have long-lasting negative impacts. Instead, it’s important to be resourceful and resilient, seeking out creative solutions, such as contacting landlords, utilities and creditors to negotiate payment plans. Ignoring bills can make a bad financial situation worse.

Additionally, Kalkowski warns individuals to beware of scams, as they seem to be proliferating right now. Thoroughly vet offers by placing additional calls and/or seeking out additional information from trusted sources online. If an offer seems too good to be true, it likely is. To steer clear of identity theft, avoid sharing personal information through text or email.

Focus on what can be controlled. A spending plan is the foundation of all financial planning, and monthly cash flow management is critical. Evaluate how much money is coming in each month, prioritize what bills need to be paid, eliminate nonessential spending and track expenses by keeping receipts. Adjust expenses accordingly each month, focusing on mortgage or rent, utilities, groceries and items needed to shelter in place. Having a plan will reduce anxiety. 

Make a plan. Set realistic financial goals and determine what can be done differently over the coming months, focusing on needs versus wants. While savings are a luxury for most families, setting aside as much money as possible into an emergency savings fund is a great use of federal stimulus money, Kalkowski says. After the pandemic, Kalkowski recommends routinely adding to savings and reducing nonessential spending, such as consolidating cable plans and making meals at home instead of purchasing fast food. Also, seek out bargains and compare prices when shopping to get the best deals possible, but only for needs, not wants. Staying purposeful with spending can help individuals avoid spending more than anticipated. 

Locate resources. Individuals who were laid off or furloughed can locate where to file for unemployment benefits through Nonprofits also may be able to help. For more information on available assistance, call 211 or visit

Filters close

Showing results

110 of 3409
Newswise: Last-resort life support option helped majority of critically ill COVID-19 patients survive, global study shows
24-Sep-2020 3:20 PM EDT
Last-resort life support option helped majority of critically ill COVID-19 patients survive, global study shows
Michigan Medicine - University of Michigan

It saved lives in past epidemics of lung-damaging viruses. Now, the life-support option known as ECMO appears to be doing the same for many of the critically ill COVID-19 patients who receive it. Patients in a new international study faced a staggeringly high risk of death, as ventilators failed to support their lungs. But after they were placed on ECMO, their actual death rate was less than 40%.

Released: 25-Sep-2020 5:05 PM EDT
Case Western Reserve University researchers to examine how COVID-19 ravaged America’s nursing homes
Case Western Reserve University

Within a few months, federal officials reported that one of every five nursing homes had experienced a death from the novel coronavirus. Not long after, several media outlets published independent analysis finding that an estimated 40% of the fatalities related to COVID-19 took place in nursing homes. Rather than surrender to the terrifying trend, Case Western Reserve researchers saw an opportunity to help.

Released: 25-Sep-2020 4:15 PM EDT
Faced with pandemic shortages, researchers combine heat and humidity to disinfect N95 masks for reuse
SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory

They found that gently heating N95 masks in high relative humidity could inactivate SARS-CoV-2 virus trapped within the masks, without degrading the masks’ performance.

Released: 25-Sep-2020 3:30 PM EDT
Team assessing if dual-antibody injection prevents COVID-19 illness
University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston

A combination antibody treatment for preventing COVID-19 illness in individuals who have had sustained exposure to someone with the virus is being studied by researchers at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth). The clinical trial is enrolling patients at Harris Health System’s Lyndon B. Johnson Hospital.

Released: 25-Sep-2020 2:30 PM EDT
Yes, Wisconsin Republicans have the power to overturn the extended mask mandate order by Governor Evers

Republicans have the legal power to reverse the order by Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers that extends the mask mandate.

Released: 25-Sep-2020 1:55 PM EDT
How do Americans view the virus? Anthropology professor examines attitudes of COVID
Northern Arizona University

In her ongoing research about Americans' responses to the COVID-19 pandemic, Northern Arizona University anthropology professor Lisa Hardy and her collaborators have talked to dozens of people.

Released: 25-Sep-2020 12:55 PM EDT
During pandemic, racism puts additional stress on Asian Americans
Massachusetts General Hospital

Many people are feeling anxious during these uncertain times as they navigate the risks associated with COVID-19 and experience the tension from physical distancing or isolation for what can seem like an eternity.

Released: 25-Sep-2020 12:55 PM EDT
COVID-19 shapes political approval ratings
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Approval ratings of political leaders surged in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a new study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Released: 25-Sep-2020 12:40 PM EDT
ASU Researchers Receive $6m State Contract to Develop Rapid, 20-Minute Covid-19 Saliva Test
Arizona State University (ASU)

As the world manages through the coronavirus pandemic, Arizona State University continues its work to discover and develop easier and more widespread COVID-19 testing to assist in managing the virus.

Released: 25-Sep-2020 11:55 AM EDT
Scholars untangle marketing's complex role in understanding political activities
American Marketing Association (AMA)

As 2020 began, many pundits predicted a politically charged year, but few predicted that it would include a global pandemic overtaxing healthcare resources, strained U.S. race relations resulting in mass demonstrations across the globe, devastating fires consuming massive swaths of the United States, and a catastrophic global economic downturn.

Showing results

110 of 3409