More people staying at home as concern about coronavirus increases

An update on the trend data we're tracking across the UK on COVID-19.

The author(s)

  • Gideon Skinner UK Head of Political Research
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There has been another increase in social distancing by staying at home, according to the latest Ipsos tracker of public opinions and behaviours around the coronavirus. The proportion reporting avoiding leaving the house has increased by 29 points on last week and is up 56 points from two weeks ago, based on an online survey of 18-75 year olds from 27-30 March. A big jump up this week has also been reported in people wearing surgical or face masks from 6% a week ago to 12% now, while the proportion shopping online for non-groceries has also increased from 11% to 18%.


This change in behaviour follows a surge in people believing that COVID-19 poses a threat to themselves personally, up to 78% from 61% last week. There has also been a rise in those very concerned – up from 25% to 36%. Concern for the country as a whole continues to be people’s main concern though, and has also increased to 94% from 86% last week, with those very concerned up from 42% to 63%.  In both cases women and older people aged 55-75 are the most worried about the risks.A screenshot of a cell phone

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Despite the rise in concern, confidence in the NHS’ ability to deal with the problems caused by the Coronavirus remains high, at 71% (little changed from 69% last week, while there has been a marginal fall in those lacking confidence from 28% to 25%).  Confidence levels remain higher than the 62% just a couple of weeks ago).

Gideon Skinner, Head of Political Research at Ipsos said:

These trends show that the British public is increasingly getting the Government’s message and staying at home. This is accompanied though by increasing concern for themselves and the country as a whole, but the consistent and slowly growing confidence in the NHS’ ability to cope with COVID-19 is more reassuring during this crisis.


Notes to Editors:

Ipsos interviewed a representative sample of 1,072 British adults aged 18-75. Interviews were conducted using its online i-omnibus from 27–30 March 2020.  Data are weighted to match the profile of the population. All polls are subject to a wide range of potential sources of error.

The author(s)

  • Gideon Skinner UK Head of Political Research