Essential Report

Likelihood of developing Coronavirus

Apr 7, 2020

Q. How likely do you think it is, that you will develop Covid-19?

  06/04 29/03 22/03 09/03
Very likely 8% 8% 8% 7%
Somewhat likely 33% 36% 34% 24%
Somewhat unlikely 45% 45% 45% 43%
Very unlikely 14% 12% 13% 26%
Base (n) 1,069 1,086 1,034 1,096

 

    Age group Location
  Total 18-34 35-54 55+ Capital Non-Capital
Very likely 8% 15% 9% 3% 9% 5%
Somewhat likely 33% 34% 36% 31% 33% 34%
Somewhat unlikely 45% 38% 42% 51% 44% 47%
Very unlikely 14% 13% 13% 14% 13% 15%
Base (n) 1,069 341 342 386 731 338

Reaction to Covid-19

Apr 7, 2020

Q. Which of the following is closer to your personal views of the Covid-19 outbreak?

  06/04 29/03 22/03
There has been an over-reaction to the threat of Covid-19 17% 18% 33%
The response to the threat of Covid-19 is about right 46% 39% 39%
The threat of Covid-19 has been under-estimated 37% 43% 28%
Base (n) 1,069 1,086 1,034

 

    Gender Age Group
  Total Male Female 18-34 35-54 55+
There has been an over-reaction to the threat of Covid-19 17% 20% 14% 28% 17% 11%
The response to the threat of Covid-19 is about right 46% 45% 47% 43% 46% 47%
The threat of Covid-19 has been under-estimated 37% 35% 39% 29% 36% 42%
Base (n) 1,069 523 546 341 342 386
  • There has been an increase in the proportion of women rating the reaction to the Covid-19 crisis to be about right (47%, up from 36% last week).
  • This increase has mainly come from a decrease in the proportion of women thinking the threat has been under-estimated (declining from 47% to 39%).

Government response to Covid-19

Apr 7, 2020

Q. Overall, how would you rate the Government’s response to the Covid-19 outbreak?

  06/04 29/03 22/03
Very poor 6% 11% 9%
Quite poor 15% 21% 20%
Neither good, nor poor 21% 24% 26%
Quite good 37% 34% 33%
Very good 21% 11% 12%
NET: Poor 21% 31% 29%
NET: Good 58% 45% 45%
Base (n) 1,069 1,086 1,034

 

    Gender Age Group Location
  Total Male Female 18-34 35-54 55+ Capital Non-Capital
Very poor 6% 8% 5% 7% 8% 5% 7% 6%
Quite poor 15% 16% 13% 21% 15% 11% 15% 13%
Neither good, nor poor 21% 22% 20% 31% 22% 16% 23% 18%
Quite good 37% 36% 38% 34% 40% 37% 36% 39%
Very good 21% 18% 24% 7% 15% 31% 19% 24%
NET: Poor 21% 24% 18% 28% 23% 16% 22% 19%
NET: Good 58% 54% 62% 41% 55% 68% 55% 63%
Base (n) 1,069 523 546 341 342 386 731 338

 

Information about Covid-19

Apr 7, 2020

Q. To what extent do you agree or disagree with the following statements about the information you’ve received about the Covid-19 outbreak?

NET: Agree 06/04 29/03 22/03
I feel informed about the situation and the impact on me and my family 70% 63% 64%
I trust the Government to provide honest and objective information about the Covid-19 outbreak 63% 56% 56%
The information I’ve received has been clear and consistent 52% 47% 51%
I trust the media to provide honest and objective information about the Covid-19 outbreak 51% 42% 35%
Base (n) 1,069 1,086 1,034

 

  NET: Agree NET: Disagree Strongly agree Somewhat agree Neither agree nor disagree Somewhat disagree Strongly disagree
I feel informed about the situation and the impact on me and my family 70% 14% 27% 43% 17% 9% 5%
I trust the Government to provide honest and objective information about the Covid-19 outbreak 63% 18% 26% 37% 19% 10% 8%
The information I’ve received has been clear and consistent 52% 26% 17% 34% 22% 19% 7%
I trust the media to provide honest and objective information about the Covid-19 outbreak 51% 26% 14% 37% 23% 16% 10%

 

NET: AGREE   Gender Age Group Location
Total Male Female 18-34 35-54 55+ Capital Non-Capital
I feel informed about the situation and the impact on me and my family 70% 66% 74% 56% 68% 78% 69% 71%
I trust the Government to provide honest and objective information about the Covid-19 outbreak 63% 59% 66% 51% 60% 70% 63% 63%
The information I’ve received has been clear and consistent 52% 49% 55% 42% 46% 60% 51% 52%
I trust the media to provide honest and objective information about the Covid-19 outbreak 51% 50% 52% 41% 49% 56% 52% 49%
Base (n) 1,069 523 546 341 342 386 731 338
  • This week, woman are more likely to agree that they feel informed of the situation and the impact on them and their families (74% up from 62%), that they trust the government to provide honest and objective information (66%, up from 56%) and trust the media (52%, up from 41%). Men’s agreement that they have trust in the media has also increased from 42% to 50%.
  • People living in regional areas have higher agreement in all four statements this week – ‘I feel informed about the situation and the impact on me and my family’ (63% to 71%), ‘I trust the Government to provide honest and objective information about the Covid-19 outbreak’ (53% to 63%), ‘The information I’ve received has been clear and consistent’ (43% to 52%) and ‘I trust the media to provide honest and objective information about the Covid-19 outbreak (38% to 49%).
  • There has been increased agreement among those aged 35-54 that they feel informed (59% to 68%) and have trust in the information from government (49% to 60%).
  • Older people (aged over 55) and those in capital cities are more likely to agree that they trust the information in media this week (42% to 56% and 43% to 52% respectively).

Changing behaviour due to Covid-19

Apr 7, 2020

Q. Have you changed your behaviour in any of the following ways since the beginning of the Covid-19 outbreak?

  06/04 29/03 22/03
Increased personal hygiene measures (e.g. hand washing) 78% 79% 72%
Limited attending social spaces, shops, restaurants or group events 82% 75% 60%
Stopped physical greetings (e.g. shaking hands, kissing, hugging) 78% 73% 60%
Bought additional groceries to stock-up 38% 41% 33%
Reduced use of cash to pay for purchases 50% 43% 23%
Changed working patterns (e.g. changed hours, or working from home) 33% 33% 20%
None of these 3% 5% 12%
Base (n) 1,069 1,086 1,034

 

    Gender Age Group Location
  Total Male Female 18-34 35-54 55+ Capital Non-Capital
Increased personal hygiene measures (e.g. hand washing) 78% 73% 83% 68% 78% 83% 80% 74%
Limited attending social spaces, shops, restaurants or group events 82% 77% 87% 70% 81% 89% 81% 83%
Stopped physical greetings (e.g. shaking hands, kissing, hugging) 78% 75% 82% 63% 77% 87% 79% 78%
Bought additional groceries to stock-up 38% 32% 44% 41% 41% 35% 40% 33%
Reduced use of cash to pay for purchases 50% 47% 54% 50% 52% 50% 51% 48%
Changed working patterns (e.g. changed hours, or working from home) 33% 32% 33% 46% 48% 17% 38% 23%
None of these 3% 4% 2% 2% 4% 3% 2% 5%
Base (n) 1,069 523 546 341 342 386 731 338

 

Financial situation during Covid-19 outbreak

Apr 7, 2020

Q. Which of the following best describes your financial situation during the Covid-19 outbreak?

NET: Agree 06/04 29/03 22/03
I do not expect the Covid-19 will impact my income 24% 26% 24%
I have sufficient savings to deal with a short-term loss of income 28% 32% 26%
I will struggle with a short-term loss of income, but will get by 31% 23% 29%
I will be in serious financial stress with short-term loss of income 16% 20% 21%
Base (n) 1,069 1,086 1,034

 

    Gender Age Group Location
  Total Male Female 18-34 35-54 55+ Capital Non-Capital
I do not expect the Covid-19 will impact my income 24% 25% 23% 13% 19% 32% 25% 29%
I have sufficient savings to deal with a short-term loss of income 28% 29% 27% 27% 24% 31% 29% 26%
I will struggle with a short-term loss of income, but will get by 31% 31% 32% 38% 34% 27% 31% 29%
I will be in serious financial stress with short-term loss of income 16% 15% 18% 22% 23% 10% 15% 17%
Base (n) 1,069 523 546 341 342 386 731 338

 

    Household Employment
  Total Have dependent children Do not have dependent children In paid employment Not in paid employment Retired
I do not expect the Covid-19 will impact my income 24% 21% 26% 12% 27% 46%
I have sufficient savings to deal with a short-term loss of income 28% 24% 30% 33% 20% 29%
I will struggle with a short-term loss of income, but will get by 31% 36% 29% 39% 31% 17%
I will be in serious financial stress with short-term loss of income 16% 19% 15% 16% 22% 8%
Base (n) 1,069 353 716 533 255 223

Coronavirus concerns

Mar 31, 2020

Q. To what extent are you concerned about the threat of the Coronavirus in Australia?

  29/03 22/03 09/03 10/02
Very concerned 53% 39% 27% 25%
Quite concerned 35% 43% 36% 43%
Not that concerned 10% 14% 28% 26%
Not at all concerned 3% 4% 9% 6%
Base (n) 1,086 1,034 1,096 1,057

 

    Gender Age Group Location
  Total Male Female 18-34 35-54 55+ Capital Non-Capital
Very concerned 53% 49% 56% 50% 54% 54% 56% 46%
Quite concerned 35% 37% 32% 35% 35% 35% 33% 37%
Not that concerned 10% 10% 9% 12% 9% 9% 9% 13%
Not at all concerned 3% 3% 2% 3% 2% 2% 2% 4%
Base (n) 1,086 539 547 341 362 383 727 359
  • Concern about Covid-19 has increased this week, with 53% now very concerned (up 14pts from last week).
  • This is driven by more women saying they are very concerned about Covid-19 (up 8pts from last week) and capital city residents increasing concern (also up 8pt).

Likelihood of developing Coronavirus

Mar 31, 2020

Q. How likely do you think it is, that you will develop Covid-19?

  29/03 22/03 09/03
Very likely 8% 8% 7%
Somewhat likely 36% 34% 24%
Somewhat unlikely 45% 45% 43%
Very unlikely 12% 13% 26%
Base (n) 1,086 1,034 1,096

 

    Age group Location
  Total 18-34 35-54 55+ Capital Non-Capital
Very likely 8% 11% 8% 5% 8% 6%
Somewhat likely 36% 37% 42% 29% 37% 34%
Somewhat unlikely 45% 39% 41% 54% 43% 49%
Very unlikely 12% 13% 10% 12% 12% 11%
Base (n) 1,086 341 362 383 727 359
  • Individual likelihood of developing Covid-19 is on par with last week, 8% of participants believe it’s very likely they will develop Covid-19, compared to 12% who think it’s very unlikely.
  • Participants over 55 believe that they are unlikely to develop Covid-19 (66% somewhat/very unlikely) than those between 18-34 (52% unlikely).

COVID-19 RESEARCH

Read Essential's ongoing research on the public response to Covid-19.

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