Attitudes towards the economic costs associated with measures against the spread of COVID-19: Population perceptions from repeated cross-sectional data of the nationally representative COVID-19 Snapshot Monitoring in Germany (COSMO)


INTRODUCTION: Our aim was to examine attitudes of the general population towards reasonableness of these costs, as well as the degree to which these costs are shared across society (solidarity financing) and to determine the factors associated with them.

METHOD: Repeated cross-sectional data from a nationally representative online-survey. More precisely, data from wave 8 (21-22 April 2020) and wave 16 (7-8 July 2020) were used (in wave 8: analytical sample with n = 976, average age was 47.0 years (SD: 15.3 years), ranging from 18 to 74 years, 51.8% female; in wave 16: analytical sample with n = 978, average age was 46.1 years (SD: 15.9 years), ranging from 18 to 74 years, 50.9% female). After a short introduction emphasizing considerable economic costs associated with the measures against the spread of the coronavirus, individuals were asked to rate the following statements (outcome measures), in each case from 1 = strongly disagree to 7 = strongly agree: "These economic costs are currently reasonable in relation to the objective pursued" (reasonableness of costs), "These economic costs should be borne jointly by all citizens and depending on income" (solidarity financing).

RESULTS: In wave 8 (wave 16 in parentheses), the average rating for the attitude towards reasonableness of costs was 4.3, SD: 1.8 (wave 16, average: 4.2, SD: 1.8) and the average rating for the attitude towards solidarity financing was 3.7, SD: 1.9 (wave 16, average: 3.3, SD: 2.0). In wave 8, more positive attitudes towards the reasonableness of costs and solidarity financing were associated with being male, higher education, not being in a partnership/being unmarried, higher affect regarding COVID-19 and higher presumed severity with respect to COVID-19. Furthermore, more positive attitudes towards the reasonableness of costs were associated with having a migration background. More positive attitudes towards solidarity financing was associated with higher age groups. Mainly similar findings were observed in wave 16.

DISCUSSION: Agreement with reasonableness of costs of preventative measures as well as solidarity financing was moderately high. Knowledge of these attitudes is important to ensure social cohesion during the fight against COVID-19.

Bibliografische Daten

StatusVeröffentlicht - 05.11.2021
PubMed 34739515