International survey: Finns most committed to observing coronavirus restrictions

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A recommendation to use face masks has been in effect in Finland since last fall.

Image: Sara Salmi / Yle

An international comparative study of 11 countries found that Finns were the most committed to complying with coronavirus restrictions.

The survey examined people’s attitudes towards the restrictions and their effectiveness in tackling the virus as well as attitudes towards policymakers, and found that Finnish respondents had the most confidence in their government and care. medical.

“This may be the reason for the success of the Finnish coronavirus strategy and the lowest rate of cumulative cases of Covid-19, 1009.5, and cumulative deaths, 13.3 (per 100,000 inhabitants) (March 2, 2021), in comparison with the rest of the European countries involved in our study, ”the survey concludes.

Compliance with safety distance measures and the recommendation for teleworking were seen in Finland as less restrictive than in the other ten countries studied.

“The confidence of Finns in policy makers came to the fore in our survey. However, clear communication about the selection criteria for restrictions and their effectiveness is important,” postdoctoral researcher at the University of Turku Tella Lantta written in the university press release announcing the results of the investigation.

Lantta led the research in Finland.

In addition to Finland, the study was carried out in the Netherlands, Belgium, Bulgaria, India, United Kingdom, Latvia, Poland, Romania, Sweden and the Czech Republic.

The survey was answered by 9,543 people, of which 542 were living in Finland. Respondents assessed the effectiveness, impact on life and compliance with 44 different coronavirus containment measures.

Fear of infection, gender and age influence perception of restrictions

The survey found that people’s tendency to comply with the restrictions was clearly associated with fear of getting infected. However, the failure to adhere to the restrictions was linked to the belief that the response of state leaders to prevent the spread of the pandemic was seen as too extreme.

“Citizens are prepared to comply with coronavirus restrictions that restrict their own basic rights if they are perceived to be effective. However, more important than the perceived effectiveness of using a mask, for example, is that citizens trust decision makers, ”Lantta said.

The study also found that education level, gender, and age influenced people’s perceptions of restrictions. Higher education, old age and female sex increased the likelihood of complying with the restrictions.

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