Monitoring Knowledge, Risk Perceptions, Preventive Behaviours and Public Trust in the Current Coronavirus Outbreak in Georgia

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Date
2020
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Abstract
The aim of the study was to explore knowledge, attitudes and behavioral patterns of citizens of Georgia as response of COVID-19 outbreak. The quantitative research was conducted through cohort survey based on 30 minutes telephone interview in a serial cross-sectional design with multiple data collections. The data have been collected repeatedly for optimal monitoring. 1000 unique respondents have been interviewed in each wave. Given presentation includes data of three waves done in April and May, 2020. The reality caused by COVID19 has reduced household incomes. Income for 23.3% of the Georgian population after Covid-19 outbreak has decreased, and the crisis mostly affected the poorest population; 55% of those stating to be employed before COVID19 lost their jobs. The majority of people and their families (more than 90%) take preventive measures and are willing to take the necessary precautions even when the restrictions are gradually lifted. Information, trust, policies • Despite satisfaction with received information (over 90%) respondents are eager to get additional information; • Emotional perceptions of coping with Coronavirus are moderately optimistic and increasing; • Most of the respondents of both waves support the implementation of some strict measures. However, a significant proportion of respondents in both waves did not support overly strict/authoritarian measures; • In general the population trusts stakeholders. Over 85% of respondents trust Clinics treating patients with COVID19, National Center for Disease Control and Public Health (NCDC), Ministry of Health and COVID State Council. Lowest levels of trust are for private companies/ businesses in relation with COVID19; • The majority of respondents (59%) agree that the plan presented by the government to lift the restrictions gradually (at 2-week intervals) is in line with the current situation. People who have lost their jobs due to the virus are less likely to want to remove the restrictions at a slower pace; • Overall, the anti-crisis plan presented by the government is positively assessed by 53% of respondents; the share of negative evaluators is 17%; According to 44% of respondents, the anti-crisis plan is the maximum that the government can do at this stage. Respondents, on the other hand, also realize that the anti-crisis plan does not provide solid guarantees for social protection.
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Knowledge, Risk perceptions, Preventive behaviours, Trust, Sources of information, Acceptance of measures, Misinformation, Stigma, Rumours, Health and non-health related consequences
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