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July 8, 2022

COVID-19 health concern declines in June: Poll

The health concern over COVID-19 in June 2022 decreased from May 2022. It averaged at 23.9%, declining from 25.3% recorded in May 2022, shows the COVID-19 concern index, which is measured by responses to an ongoing poll Verdict launched in March 2020. The poll has been tracking how the concerns over coronavirus have been changing over time.

The poll asked how concerned the respondents were about the spread of coronavirus and included five options to choose from – very concerned, slightly concerned, neither concerned nor unconcerned, not very concerned, and not concerned.

Concern index is based on respondents who answered that they are very concerned about the spread of COVID-19.

COVID-19 concern declined in the second week of June

The concern during the first week of June averaged at 24.3% declining from 25.8% in the last week of May and coinciding with the decline in the number of new cases and deaths worldwide.

New COVID-19 cases declined by 12% between 30 May and 05 June, according to the World Health Organization (WHO) data. The number of new deaths also declined by 22% during the week compared to the previous week.

COVID concern declined further in the second week of June to an average of 22.9%, although the number of new cases remained nearly the same as the previous week. The number of deaths, however, rose by 4% compared to the previous week after five weeks of continuous decline.

The Eastern Mediterranean, the South-East Asia, and the Americas reported increases in new weekly cases by 58%, 33%, and 13% respectively, while new weekly cases decreased in Europe, Africa, and the Western Pacific Region. The number of new weekly deaths declined across four regions, while increasing in the Region of the Americas and the Western Pacific Region by 21% and 17% respectively.

Concern increases in the fourth week of June

COVID-19 health concern increased to 23.08% in the third week of June, despite a 4% decrease in new cases between 13 June and 19 June from the previous week. The number of new weekly deaths also declined, with more than 7,500 mortalities being reported representing a 16% decline as compared to the previous week.

The South-East Asia Region, the Eastern Mediterranean Region, and the European Region reported increases in new weekly cases by 46%, 45%, and 6% respectively, while the remaining three WHO regions reported decreases in new weekly cases. The number of new weekly deaths reported decreasing trends across five regions, except South-East Asia, which reported an increase of 4% in new weekly deaths.

COVID concern increased further to 25.4% in the fourth week of June, coinciding with an increase in the number of new weekly cases by 18% between 20 June and 26 June compared to the previous week. The number of new weekly deaths remained similar to that of the previous week. The health concern towards the end of June declined to 23.3%.

The WHO stated that the Omicron variant continues to be the dominant variant that is spreading globally, among all the sequences submitted to the Global Initiative on Sharing All Influenza Data (GISAID). It accounts for 94% of the sequences reported in the past 30 days. The BA.2 sub-lineage of the variant declined in incidence from 30% to 25% in the second and third weeks of June. The incidence of the BA.2.12.1 sub-lineage also declined from 18% to 11%, while that of BA.4 increased to 12% from 9% and for BA.5 the incidence increased to 43% from 28%.

The analysis is based on a total of 707 responses received from the readers of Verdict network sites between 01 and 30 June 2022.

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