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Coronavirus: health and economic concerns

14/2020, 30.04.2020

In the sixth week of the "BfR-Corona-Monitor" the extent of the health and economic consequences are estimated to be about the same

In view of the coronavirus pandemic, are the health or economic consequences more predominant? The results of the "BfR-Corona-Monitor", a regular survey conducted by the German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR), show that both are regarded with equal concern. While in the previous weeks the respondents felt more affected by the economic than the health impacts, this difference is no longer discernible in the current week. "The population still regards the coronavirus as a serious threat to its own health”, comments BfR-President Professor Dr. Dr. Andreas Hensel on the results of the survey.

The mandatory wearing of masks in public transport and retail in Germany is approved and deemed appropriate by 83 percent. More than a third of the participants said they already use masks and gloves to protect themselves against an infection.

However, the obligation to wear masks does not seem to have an impact on the perceived protection against an infection. As in the previous week, only 36 percent of the participants are convinced that they can protect themselves against an infection with the novel coronavirus. In addition, the majority of the respondents continue to regard proximity to other people as a likely pathway of infection.

Acceptance for the closure of certain shops is 66 percent, and the continuing contact prohibition is now only supported by 77 percent of the participants - a drop of 15 percentage points compared to the first survey five weeks ago. In contrast, the high level of support for restrictions on travel activities has remained nearly unchanged since the survey began in March (93 percent).

The BfR is continually updating its FAQs on the topic of coronavirus, in light of the dynamically changing situation.

About the BfR-Corona-Monitor

The BfR-Corona-Monitor is a recurring (multi-wave) representative survey of the German population's perception of risks from the novel coronavirus. Since 24 March 2020, around 500 randomly selected people have been asked by telephone every Tuesday about their perception of the risk of infection and the protective measures they have taken, amongst other things. A summary of the data is regularly published on the homepage of the German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment. More information about the method and sample can be found in publications about the BfR-Corona-Monitor.

About the BfR

The German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR) is a scientifically independent institution within the portfolio of the Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture (BMEL) in Germany. It advises the German federal government and German federal states ("Laender") on questions of food, chemical and product safety. The BfR conducts its own research on topics that are closely linked to its assessment tasks.

This text version is a translation of the original German text which is the only legally binding version.



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