Is the pandemic over? The public and experts weigh in

posted in: Health, Survey | 1
Coronavirus circling the globe

On March 11, 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared COVID-19 a global pandemic. It’s now been two years, five months, and 25 days. Is the pandemic over? What do the experts say? What does the general public believe?

StatsFind conducted a global survey from August 8 until August 19, 2022, and processed almost 1,500 responses to answer those questions.

Here’s what people have to say.

Is the pandemic over? What the public says

Of the 1,500 respondents, an overwhelming 70% believe that the pandemic is ongoing. Only 30% think that it’s over.

Those that believe the pandemic continues

When asked why they believe the pandemic isn’t over, here’s what some people said:

“There are still many people suffering from COVID-19. Although it is not as serious as before, it is still not to be taken lightly.” – Beijing, China

“I think the epidemic still has a certain impact on the overall market environment, and there is still continuous human transmission.” – Chicago, Illinois, USA

“It is ALL about human cooperation to fight it. As long as we look at not getting a vaccine, not wearing a mask, not washing our hands, and not keeping our distance as rights, it will keep attacking us wave after wave. It is insane to think these little things are impinging on some human freedom.

At this point, we may see a stronger and stronger virus from mutations. So strong it will completely bypass all immune system defenses, including vaccines, and become much more contagious and specifically target the lungs faster than ever. Then there will be no defense at all! We will be back to square one and have to start all over again.” – Chandigarh, India

“I feel things are far from over, especially with the discovery of other COVID-19 variants. We need to be alert and prepared.” – San Bernadino, California, USA

“I contracted COVID last month and soon realized it was a wave that had not been reported. My sister […] got it with me […], and so did many people I know in my social circle. Despite vaccination and being boosted, I had a tough time with fevers going up to 104 degrees Fahrenheit and was in a terrible state. My friends and I have been having long COVID symptoms too. No one cares about it at work or in public anymore – despite illness, we’re expected to show up during the 14 days and after as if we were on vacation. It’s really sad.” – Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Those that believe the pandemic is over

When asked why they believe the pandemic is over, here’s what some people said:

“It’s not affecting my personal life at the moment.” – Springfield, Massachusetts, USA

“You haven’t seen much of it on the news.” – Bensheim, Hesse, Germany

“My living area is safe, and there are no outbreaks.” – Corpus Christi, Texas, USA

“People vaccinated and wearing masks can no longer catch the virus. It’s safe.” – Columbus. Ohio, USA

“We have a better understanding of the virus, and we have good tools at our disposal, so the pandemic is over.” – Ashburn, Virginia, USA

“I think it’s over. It’s not a terrible virus. It’s just the common flu. I’m sure most people get it, stay at home for a few days and get over it, so there’s no need to worry.” – Pensacola, Florida, USA

“The COVID-19 pandemic is no longer as scary as it used to be. The emergence of vaccines and special treatments makes people believe that the epidemic is over.” – Santa Monica, California, USA

bar graph depicting the ratio of yes to no answers when asked, “is the pandemic over?”

Is the pandemic over? What the experts say

As of September 5, 2022, the World Health Organization still labels the spread of COVID-19 as a pandemic. Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General, added the following comments regarding the pandemic:

  • The pandemic reached a tragic milestone of one million reported deaths in 2022.
  • One-third of the world’s population remains unvaccinated.
  • Two-thirds of healthcare workers and three-quarters of older adults in low-income countries are unvaccinated.

In the latest media briefing on COVID-19, Dr. Ghebreyesus added that, in high-income countries, 30% of healthcare workers and 20% of older adults remain unvaccinated.

He then made the following statement:

“Living with COVID-19 doesn’t mean pretending the pandemic is over. If you go walking in the rain without an umbrella, pretending it’s not raining won’t help you. You’ll still get wet. Likewise, pretending a deadly virus is not circulating is a huge risk.“

Survey methodology and demographics

StatsFind invited people globally through social media (Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, and Instagram) to participate in this survey. These results reflect the views of the over 1,500 respondents.

Most respondents (71%) were between 25 and 40 years old. Fifty-four percent of the participants were male, 45% were female, and 92% lived in the United States.

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