COVID-19 Risk Perception among Indonesians in Early Stage of the Outbreak

Ratih Oktri Nanda, Lolita Lolita, Wiwik Indayati, Ivong Rusdiyanti, Nurjannah Nurjannah, Azis Ikhsanudin, Silvia Mareti


Indonesia confirmed its first COVID-19 case on 2nd March 2020, when other countries have already reported several numbers in the previous month. This study aimed to explore the risk perception of Indonesians in the early stage of the COVID-19 outbreak. This cross-sectional study was conducted among 495 participants using a web-based questionnaire. Primary data were collected from 3rd to 27th March 2020 including the perceived severity, vulnerability, threat, self and response efficacy of the participants. The results showed that the perceived threat of the outbreak in its early stage is the second highest compared to other diseases. The perceived severity among the participants was high. However, they had low vulnerability. Those in the middle region showed higher level of self and response efficacy. Meanwhile, people who work as private sector employee (β=0.146, P=0.004), live in the western region (β =-0.184, P=0.000), with a higher knowledge score (β =0.096, P=0.032) had higher perceived threat. Furthermore, Indonesians perceived COVID-19 as a public health risk at the early stage of the outbreak. Therefore, this study could be a preliminary finding for risk communication during the pandemic and other emerging infectious diseases in the future. 


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