As the number of people confirmed to have contracted a new strain of coronavirus continues to rise, Canadians are remaining relatively calm, at least when they consider the situation domestically.
A new study from the non-profit Angus Reid Institute finds three-in-ten (30%) residents in this country say they are worried that they may contract the virus, for which researchers across the globe are racing to create a vaccine.
Anxiety is much greater when Canadians apply their lens more broadly. Four-in-ten (40%) are concerned about the impact the outbreak may have on their community, and three-quarters (76%) are concerned about the impact on the global community, as they watch the death count rise in China.
Most are approaching the situation with caution. Half of Canadians are taking some form of extra care, whether that is washing their hands more often or avoiding public places. Further, half (48%) say they would cancel any plans to travel areas in and around China that have been most affected, while just one-in-twelve (8%) say the coronavirus would not affect their travel decisions at all.
A significant segment of Canadians (33%) say they are not confident in their province’s own front-line health services to handle a coronavirus outbreak if the problem does, indeed, worsen in this country.
Seven-in-ten Canadians say that they feel the threat of the coronavirus when it comes to an outbreak in Canada is largely overblown. Three-in-ten say they feel the threat is real and should be taken seriously.
Canadians are near-unanimously aware of this health issue. The coronavirus outbreak scores as the second highest of any issue ever asked about by the Angus Reid Institute, with just one per cent of respondents having not heard much about it.