According to a study conducted by Aga Khan University (AKU) in collaboration with The Chinese University of Hong Kong, 1 out of 6 Pakistanis or 17% deem themselves safe from COVID-19 infection even if they don’t take any precautionary measures.
1,406 Pakistanis participated in the study which was carried out during the first two weeks of May. AKU researchers then compared the results of the study with another similar study carried out in Hong Kong.
As per the findings of the study, only 41% of Pakistanis considered Coronavirus symptoms as extremely severe against 97% of Hong Kongers.
Meanwhile, 7 out of 10 or 68% were of the view that their chances to survive COVID-19 infection are high in comparison to the 36% of the Hong Kongers.
Pakistanis also appeared less likely to seek basic information regarding precautionary measures and symptoms of the Coronavirus than Hong Kongers.
AKU researchers have noted that such views relating to the risks of contracting the disease and its complications directly influence precautionary behavior such as using face masks to avoid falling prey to the virus.
Moreover, 8 out of 10 or 79% Pakistanis firmly believed that Coronavirus numbers provided by the government depicted a true picture of the outbreak in the country. On the other hand, only 16% of Hong Kongers trusted their government for being transparent during the outbreak.
7 out of 10 citizens in both countries were reluctant to go to hospitals or clinics in case they contract Coronavirus.
Pakistani men demonstrated a lower understanding of the risks and complications of the Coronavirus than women.
71% of Pakistani men avoided going out during countrywide lockdown against 87% of women.
As per the study, Pakistani men preferred to obtain information about Coronavirus pandemic from the family and friends. Pakistani women, on the other hand, used to rely on COVID-19 information provided by experts.
However, 62% of Pakistani women suffered from anxiety and depression during the countrywide lockdown in comparison to 50% of men.
Prof. Fauziah Rabbani, the study’s principal investigator and associate vice provost for research at the AKU, has said that indifference of Pakistanis towards the risk and preventive measures against COVID-19 infection is alarming and could lead to a resurgence of cases post-Eid-ul-Azha.
We need to be more cautious and attentive to preventive measures especially during the Eid holidays so that we can continue to contain the disease.