People in Slovakia limited social contact more than those in the Czech Republic

Mostly those who fear the virus are unwilling to meet with other people, the poll shows.

Illustrative stock photoIllustrative stock photo (Source: TASR)

Nearly 95 percent of people in Slovakia have partially or completely limited their social contact.

This stems from a recent poll titled “How are You, Slovakia?”, carried out by the MNFORCE company, the Seesame agency and the institutes of the Slovak Academy of Sciences (SAV) on March 24-27, 2021.

At the time, stricter curfew rules were in force, as several exceptions between 20:00 and 1:00, including going out into nature, were scrapped. Not even holiday trips abroad were permitted.

“Our survey has led to two important and encouraging revelations,” said Miloslav Bahna from the SAV’s Institute of Sociology.

First, even after three months of hard lockdown, there are no signs of “pandemic fatigue”, and respondents say that they limit their social contacts to the same extent as in the first month after stricter rules were introduced.

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Second, the group of people who have not limited their social contact in Slovakia is much smaller than the same group in the Czech Republic.

“The reason for this difference is a stronger presence of voices casting doubt on the anti-pandemic measures in the public discourse in the Czech Republic,” Bahna added.

Limitation of contact remains high

As much as 37.7 percent of respondents said they limited their contact with people outside their own household completely, while 56.9 percent said they limited it partially.

The share is very similar to the previous edition of the poll carried out at the turn of January and February when 39.3 percent of respondents said they limited their contact completely and 54.2 percent said they limited it partially.

The answers imply that people in Slovakia still perceive the threat of the pandemic seriously and continue to be careful. It also seems that people who feel endangered by the virus tend to limit their contact more, including seniors.

On the other hand, supporters of the far-right Kotlebovci – People’s Party Our Slovakia (ĽSNS) have limited their social contacts only minimally.

More than in the Czech Republic

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The poll compared responses with those provided in a similar survey conducted by the Czech Academy of Sciences.

In the Czech survey from November 2020-February 2021, nearly 30 percent of respondents said that during the hard lockdown, they did not limit their contact. The March edition of the “How are you, Slovakia?” poll suggests that the share of such people here was about 13 percent.

Most respondents in both countries tend to wear masks or respirators (around 70 percent).

Read more about the coronavirus developments in Slovakia:

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