Public sees end of pandemic in upcoming months: Poll
A majority of Turkey’s public predict that the COVID-19 pandemic, which has disrupted social life and economies for more than two years, will come to an end within this year, according to a poll conducted by research firm İpsos for daily Milliyet.
The proportion of people who think that the pandemic poses a risk to the country dropped significantly from 76 percent at the beginning of the year to 31 percent last week, the poll results showed.
A third of the population believe that the pandemic will be a thing of the past by the end of the summer.
Those feeling highly worried that themselves or a family member could contract the coronavirus disease decreased from 59 percent to 30 percent in the last four months.
Only 21 percent of the people questioned as part of the survey said that they still worry as much as they did at the beginning of the pandemic, while six percent told the pollster that they are even more worried.
As the COVID-19 pandemic appeared to be receding, Turkey lifted the outdoor mask mandate on March 2.
On April 26, the requirement to wear protective face masks indoors in Turkey was scrapped, with the exception of medical institutions and public transportation.
Nearly half the population (49 percent) expressed their support for the decision to ease COVID-19 measures, whereas 35 percent opposed it.
Around 45 percent of the respondents said that they will keep wearing a face mask in public although it is not mandatory. The ratio of people who have given up using face masks with the new decision hit 42 percent, while 7 percent said they have always been against wearing face masks.
The people surveyed “are more urban, more educated, and/or more affluent than the general population,” Ipsos said in its methodology note. Therefore, the results “should be viewed as reflecting the views of the more ‘connected’ segment” of the population, it added.
On a global scale, the proportion concerned about the coronavirus pandemic dropped 15 points from 33 percent last month to 18 percent.
“Falling from first in February to eighth place in our global issues ranking, COVID-19 records its lowest score for the second month in a row since we began tracking it almost two years ago,” the firm said in its “What worries the world?” survey report for April.
After joining the top-five issues for the first time in March, inflation has moved up to the top concern globally. Poverty and social inequality, unemployment, crime and violence, financial-political corruption, taxes and healthcare topics also prevailed worries about the pandemic.
In Turkey, the proportion of people worried the most about the inflation rate, which is around 70 percent annually, has reached 58 percent, the survey showed.
“Inflation was already the number-one concern in Argentina, Canada, Great Britain, Poland, Turkey and the United States, with Germany now joining that list,” Ipsos said.
Turkey’s confirmed cases of the coronavirus increased by 1,480 and nine more people died, the Health Ministry announced on May 8.