Study: Majority think worst of Covid is over

Monday, October 26th, 2020 00:00 |
A resident of Kawangware estate is tested during a mass testing exercise. Photo/PD/John ochieng

An estimated 71 per cent of people living in low-income areas of Nairobi are not worried about contracting coronavirus while another 65 per cent believe the worst is over, according to a report released yesterday.

According to the report compiled by Tifa (Trends and Insights for Africa) research, the level of worry dropped from 71 per cent to 40 per cent while those who think that the worst is gone rose from 39 per cent to 65 per cent.

The report also says the number of people who don’t want to be tested for coronavirus had risen from 10 per cent, 15 per cent with majority of them saying they fear the pain and discomfort associated with it.

“The top two reasons for not wanting to be tested are fear of the pain and discomfort from the procedure (36 per cent) and do not believe that the virus exists (14 per cent),” says the report released by Tifa CEO Maggie Ireri.

She said the survey sought to understand the level of awareness including understanding the coronavirus, measures they have taken at individual level and future expectations regarding the pandemic.

The report further indicates that at least 10 per cent of the respondents felt that they could contract the virus through testing kits while another 8 per cent said they cannot test because they do not have any symptoms associated with the disease.

This is the Third Release of Tifa’s survey on the awareness and impact of the Covid-19 virus pandemic and the measures implemented to contain it among Nairobi’s low-income areas, says the report.

“It includes findings related to public health issues associated with the Covid-19 virus, specifically: awareness, levels of concern, individual prevention measures, and expectations of the virus’ likely future course,” it adds.

The survey was conducted through phone interviews with 555 respondents out of which 429 (77 per cent) had participated in both first and second round of research. The survey was conducted between September 24 and October 2.

Notably, the research was conducted a few days before President Uhuru Kenyatta relaxed restrictions by opening bars and churches and lifted travels bans.

He also cut curfew hours in a bid to restore businesses. However, a few days later the country witnessed an upsurge in new cases as Kenyans threw caution to the wind and resumed their normal lives. The country has also witnessed heightened political activities.

Some of the informal settlement areas that the study focused on include: Huruma, Kibera, Mathare, Korogocho, Mukuru Kwa Njenga and Kawangware slums.

It adds that 76 per cent of the respondents know somebody who was evicted because of failure to pay rent.

At the same time, majority of respondents felt they risked contracting coronavirus in markets arguing it is almost impossible to keep physical distance in such places.

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