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Covid-19 Poll: People trust doctors, social media, 85% confused.



PHOTO: A new Covid-19 poll shows people are confused by too many information sources. (via Flickr Leo Hidalgo)

A new poll shows that Thai people trust doctors for Covid-19 information, but nearly half also trust social media, while nearly 85% find the onslaught of information available at least somewhat confusing. The new Suan Dusit Poll was conducted by Suan Dusit Rajabhat University between July 19 and 22 with 1,691 people responding online. Those surveyed were allowed to choose more than one answer for each question and were polled about the availability of information regarding Covid-19 in Thailand.

While just 15% of people in the poll said they weren’t confused by the overabundance of information sources about Covid-19, 41% said they were fairly confused, and 44% said they were confused by it. So what info can you trust? A healthy 65% said they believe doctors and medical professionals are reliable information sources and 60% said we should trust experts, researchers, academics, and influencers. But an eye-opening 47% of people put faith in Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and other social media sources for Covid-19 information.

People used the information they found mostly to take better care of themselves and their families, with 91% saying they focused on their personal health and 81% on that of their family members. 80% said they made a point to not meet with others or go out unnecessarily. The poll found that 60% said they sought further Covid-19 safety information but only 47% looked for resources about how to get vaccinated.

What poll respondents found most confusing in the sea of information was the ups and downs of the government’s Covid-19 vaccine rollout, with appointments being delayed and cancelled, changing methods of registration, and general mismanagement. 75% of people agreed with that, followed closely by 73% saying the changing information and data about mixing vaccines and third booster vaccines for those with Sinovac was hard to follow. 72% found it hard to keep up with the different vaccine brands, which were most effective and which carried different side effects.

66% of poll respondents were confused trying to keep track of businesses closing and financial assistance programs the government enacted to help with Covid-19. And nearly 56% were unclear on the rules and restrictions involved in travelling between different provinces.

When asked what was the information they found most important, those vaccine details of efficacy and side effects were the top answer with 72% of those surveyed citing it. 71% thought details of the steps the government is taking in high-risk areas was very valuable, and 68% found value in how many hospital beds were available and where. 62% thought the results of Covid-19 studies and research and treatment methods were of utmost importance, while 61% simply wanted to know how to spot Covid-19 symptoms in themselves or others.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Neill is a journalist from the United States with 10+ years broadcasting experience and national news and magazine publications. He graduated with a degree in journalism and communications from the University of California and has been living in Thailand since 2014.

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