Ballot: Utahns not frightened about catching COVID-19 or the flu

Ballot: Utahns not frightened about catching COVID-19 or the flu

Solely 30% of Utahns fear about getting one COVID-19 or the flu this fall, in keeping with the most recent Deseret Information/Hinckley Institute of Politics ballot.

The survey discovered equal ranges of concern about contracting both the pandemic coronavirus or the seasonal flu, though one virus is way extra lethal. Greater than 5,000 Utahns have died from COVID-19 because the pandemic started in early 2020, whereas Utah reported 300 deaths from the flu in 2019.


Nonetheless, solely 7% of Utahns are very involved about opting out COVID-19 and 5% really feel the identical in regards to the flu. Among the many 70% of Utahns who aren’t involved about both virus, 40% stated they aren’t in any respect involved about contracting COVID-19, in comparison with 37% who stated the identical in regards to the flu.

The ballot was carried out Oct. 3-6 amongst 801 registered voters in Utah by Dan Jones & Associates for the Deseret Information and the Hinckley Institute of Politics on the College of Utah. The ballot has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.46 share factors.

All through the pandemic, the variety of flu circumstances dropped dramatically worldwide as folks wore masks, socially distanced and averted gatherings to gradual the unfold of COVID-19. However with many now not takes these precautionsthe flu roared again this yr within the winter that simply resulted in Australia and different components of the southern hemisphere.

That is what led to new warnings that america and different international locations within the northern hemisphere might face what Han Kim, a professor of public well being at Westminster School in Salt Lake Metropolis, known as the “double whammy” of influenza and COVID-19 this winter.

“We’re able to see it,” Kim stated. “So many people are involved. However I additionally perceive why individuals are simply prepared to maneuver on. There’s a number of different unhealthy information. … With the battle in Ukraine, the inflation, the financial unhealthy information popping out and all of the political rhetoric, I feel individuals are simply looking for peace of their lives.”

Jason Perry, director of the Hinckley Coverage Institute, stated Utahns are now not coated by COVID-19.

“Within the minds of the overwhelming majority of Utahns, COVID has joined different viruses, such because the flu, that can stay however are now not a serious concern on account of expertise, pure immunity and vaccinations,” Perry stated.


An indication detailing the dangers of COVID-19 is displayed on the facade of the Clift Constructing in Salt Lake Metropolis on Monday, Oct. 10, 2022.

Ben B. Brown, Deseret Information

“Like different endemic ailments, prevention and therapy choices can be found for individuals who need them or are at severe well being danger,” he stated. “These funds have vastly lowered the extent of concern amongst Utahns about contracting any of those viruses.”

It may be straightforward to place off any worries viruses which will not go away if it has been a very long time since they did a lot harm. Kim stated folks appear to have forgotten that the flu is a killer and are treating COVID-19 “nearly like a chilly” as a result of omicron subvariants at the moment circulating are seen as much less extreme than earlier strains.

Nonetheless, even because the variety of COVID-19 circumstances declines, by mid-October Seven day common for Utah That is greater than 215 circumstances, a quantity that does not embrace at-home check outcomes, and 6 extra deaths within the week. The nation’s every day common of infections reached greater than 38,000 new circumstances and 377 deaths, in keeping with knowledge collected by The New York Occasions.

Blended messages about public well being dangers, like a latest message from President Joe Biden declaration of the tip of the pandemicundoubtedly harm the administration’s efforts to coach folks doable surge by way of this winter up to date COVID-19 pictures concentrating on at the moment circulating variations of the virus.

Solely about 5% of People are eligible acquired upgraded amps as they have been the primary proposed about six weeks in the past for everybody 12 and older. Eligibility since then has been prolonged to youngsters ages 5 and up, and all 6 months and older are additionally really helpful flu shot.

“We’re not that vigilant,” Kim stated. “The message appears to be getting misplaced.”


Barbara Persson poses for a photograph at her residence in West Valley Metropolis, Friday, Oct. 14, 2022. Persson says she’s not too frightened about COVID-19 and this yr’s flu season.

By Scott G. Winterton, Deseret Information

Barbara Individual of West Valley Metropolis, a retired district supervisor for the native workplace of the Nationwide Stock Service, stated she now not worries about contracting COVID-19 and has at all times had so little worry of the flu that she by no means will get her annual flu shot.

For a 74-year-old man, COVID-19 turned “just like the flu.” I am not afraid of flu or chilly or something. I am not afraid of that.” Individual stated she felt in another way in the beginning of the pandemic, however started to mistrust what consultants have been saying after the primary spherical of COVID-19 pictures.

“I have not gotten any boosters and I will not,” Individual stated, dismissing her elevated danger significantly ailing due to her age. “I’m very wholesome and it doesn’t trouble me in any respect. If I die, I die. I can die strolling out tomorrow or get in my automotive and go to the grocery retailer. I am not going to dwell in worry.”

The person stated he would put on a masks if crucial and at all times takes precautions wash your fingers usually to cease the unfold of the illness. “If I do know somebody has COVID, I am not going to go up and hug and kiss them, belief me,” she stated.

It has been months since anybody round her has had COVID-19, Individual stated, however her granddaughter’s father-in-law died of the virus a yr in the past, though “he was 50 and supposedly wholesome.” Nonetheless, she stated she’s undecided COVID-19 is “as severe as they are saying it’s, though I do know individuals who have died from it.”


Barbara Individual cleans her residence in West Valley Metropolis on Friday, Oct. 14, 2022. Individual says she’s not too frightened about COVID-19 and this yr’s flu season.

By Scott G. Winterton, Deseret Information

Too many individuals are being taken all or nothing method to COVID-19, Kim stated.

“They take this binary method of, ‘Am I secure or not?’ We’re actually uncomfortable in these margins, in these grey areas. The implication is, “Oh, I both exit and luxuriate in my life… or I sit at residence and simply isolate myself from everybody.” I feel that is how folks suppose,” stated the professor.

The truth of residing in a world the place COVID-19 and different lethal viruses don’t go away is someplace within the center, he stated.

“Truly, it is a totally different diploma of danger,” Kim stated. “Sure, you may nonetheless exit and dwell your life. Simply be somewhat extra cautious.’

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