Fear and Stigma of COVID-19-related factors among the general population in Indonesia

Ernawati Umar, Ahmad Darajat, Ilma Fiddyanti, Lili Amaliah

Abstract


COVID-19 is a new disease; thus, there are many unknowns and concerns about it. This "newness" may cause fear and then further entrenched stereotypes and stigmas. To date, few studies have explored the fear and stigma of COVID-19 among the general Indonesian population. This study aimed to investigate the fear and stigma of covid-19-related factors among the general population in Indonesia. A cross-sectional was using an anonymous online self-administered questionnaire was conducted from Augustus to September 2020 in Banten, Indonesia. All people under the age of 18 and fluent in Indonesian were recruited using convenience sampling. About 780 respondents (response rate: 78%) were returned, with 20 being eliminated due to missing data. Socio-demographic characteristics, the Social Impact Scale (SIS), Fear of COVID-19, Questions on the knowledge, and Multidimensional Scale of Perceived Social Support were used to collect fear and stigma-related factors. Multivariable linear regression models were used to analyze data.  The majority of respondents were female (66.9%), with the mean age was 32.5 (SD = 8.7). Respondents reported higher financial insecurity, followed by social rejection and social isolation. The mean of fear was 3.12 (SD = 1.34). Participants’ overall fear of COVID score was positively associated with female, non-healthcare professionals living in the city, confirmed with COVID-19, suspected cases, quarantine for close, and knowledge. Fear of COVID score was negatively associated with social support. Stigma towards COVID-19 score was negatively associated with higher education level, knowledge, social support, and positively associated with non-healthcare professional living in the city, confirmed COVID-19, suspected case, quarantine for close contact, and fear of COVID-19. The results indicate that the COVID-19 fear and stigma have been experienced by many of the general Indonesian community. Therefore, public health education and awareness-raising of the significance of public support are needed to remove the perceived stigma.


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DOI: http://doi.org/10.11591/ijphs.v11i3.21377

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