Covid fears continue into this winter

by Gazette Reporter
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Almost three-fifths of people believe that there will be another ‘wave’ of Covid-19 this year, according to new research carried out by Ipsos for the Irish Pharmaceutical Healthcare Association. 

The research, measuring public attitudes to Covid-19 vaccination and to vaccination in general, shows that 58% of people believe another significant rise in Covid-19 cases this year is either fairly likely or very likely. Just 28% of people believe a significant rise in Covid-19 cases is unlikely. The rest said it was neither likely nor unlikely or they did not know. 

Most people, or 70%, believe that medical science can respond to future Covid-19 variants while 68% say that they would feel protected against the disease if there is another ‘wave’.

Over four-fifths of people, or 84%, believe that Ireland would be in a better position to deal with another pandemic because of our experience with Covid-19. 

Trust in vaccination remains high, with 79% of people saying that vaccines in general are effective. That figure is largely unchanged since Ipsos asked the same question in June. Three in four people, or 74%, trust the medical evidence about vaccines.  

Doctors or nurses, at 85%, remain the most trusted people among those listed for information about vaccines, down six points since Ipsos asked the same question in February. They are followed by pharmacists, at 80%, scientists or vaccine specialists, at 79%, and official health websites, at 71%. Online user-generated content and politicians are among the least trusted when it comes to information about vaccines, registering 7% and 14%, respectively. 

The survey finds that 91% of people have been vaccinated for Covid-19, with 44% saying they have had two or more booster doses. About one in three, or 34%, have received a single booster dose for Covid-19. 

Michael O’Connell, IPHA’s President, said: “Public trust in vaccination remains high and our experience of living through Covid-19 gives us confidence in dealing with another pandemic. But Covid-19 is still with us so it is encouraging to find that most people believe in the ability of medical science to respond to new variants. 

“We know that the formula for scientific invention is intellectual property. That formula helped the industry, with others, to find answers fast for Covid-19, and it is helping us to develop new medicines for a range of other serious medical conditions all the time.

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