Among COVID-19 survivors, most report experiencing severe or moderate symptoms

Axios-Ipsos poll shows those that have had COVID-19 report a greater likelihood to get the vaccine than the general public

The author(s)

  • Mallory Newall Vice President, US, Public Affairs
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Washington, DC, December 23, 2020

Earlier this month, Axios and Ipsos re-contacted people who indicated testing positive for COVID-19 in one of the Axios-Ipsos Coronavirus Index surveys, in order to better understand their personal experiences with the virus. This firsthand account of COVID-19 survivors shows that most experienced very severe or moderate symptoms, and around two-thirds report being likely to get the vaccine (compared to around half of the general public). Moreover, a majority report taking the virus more seriously as a result of their experience.

For those that experienced symptoms of COVID-19 (more than 9 in 10), the most common symptoms were fatigue and a loss of smell or taste.

  • More than half said they experienced very severe or moderate symptoms. Virtually all (94%) experienced some level of symptoms.
  • Eight in ten with symptoms reported fatigue, while three quarters experienced a loss of smell or taste – one of the most prominent clues of the presence of COVID-19 in the body. Seven in ten also reported muscle or body aches.

For a majority of respondents, contracting the coronavirus has caused them to take the threat of the virus more seriously.

  • Fifty-four percent said their personal experience made them take it more seriously, compared to just 15% who said less seriously.

graphicNearly two-thirds say it is likely they will get the coronavirus vaccine once it is publicly available.

  • Sixty-three percent say they are likely to get the vaccine. A plurality (35%) indicate they are very likely.
  • In comparison, around half of the general population indicates they are likely to get the first generation vaccine when available, according to the latest Axios-Ipsos Coronavirus Index.
  • The ratio of COVID-19 survivors who say they plan to get the vaccine, compared to those who are unlikely, is roughly two-thirds to one-third.

About the Study

This Axios/Ipsos Covid Diagnosis Poll was conducted December 4th to December 13th, 2020 by Ipsos using our KnowledgePanel®. This poll is based on 319 adults age 18 or older respondents who self-reported they had been diagnosed with COVID-19.

The survey was conducted using KnowledgePanel, the largest and most well-established online probability-based panel that is representative of the adult US population. Our recruitment process employs a scientifically developed addressed-based sampling methodology using the latest Delivery Sequence File of the USPS – a database with full coverage of all delivery points in the US. Households are randomly sampled from all available households in the U.S. All persons in selected households are invited to join and participate in KnowledgePanel. Ipsos provides selected households that do not already have internet access a tablet and internet connection at no cost to them. Those who join the panel and who are selected to participate in a survey are sent a unique password-protected log-in used to complete surveys online. As a result of our recruitment and sampling methods, samples from KnowledgePanel cover all households regardless of their phone or internet status and findings can be reported with a margin of sampling error and projected to the general population.

The study was conducted in English and Spanish. The data were weighted to adjust for gender by age, race, education, Census region, metropolitan status and household income. The demographic weighting benchmarks are from the KnowledgePanel profile among panelists who self-reported they had been diagnosised with COVID-19. The weighting categories were as follows:

  • Gender (Male/Female) by Age (18–29, 30–44, 45–59, and 60+)
  • Race/Hispanic Ethnicity (White/Non-Hispanic, Black/Non-Hispanic, Other or 2+ Races/Non-Hispanic, Hispanic)
  • Education (High School graduate or less, Some College, Bachelor and beyond)
  • Census Region (Northeast, Midwest, South, West)
  • Metropolitan status (Metro, non-Metro)
  • Household Income (Under $50,000, $50,000-$99,999, $100,000+)

Weights were trimmed at both extremes of the distribution. The margin of sampling error is plus or minus 7.5 percentage points at the 95% confidence level, for results based on the entire sample of adults. The margin of sampling error takes into account the design effect, which was 1.86. The margin of sampling error is higher and varies for results based on sub-samples. In our reporting of the findings, percentage points are rounded off to the nearest whole number. As a result, percentages in a given table column may total slightly higher or lower than 100%. In questions that permit multiple responses, columns may total substantially more than 100%, depending on the number of different responses offered by each respondent.

About Ipsos

Ipsos is the world’s third largest market research company, present in 90 markets and employing more than 18,000 people.

Our passionately curious research professionals, analysts and scientists have built unique multi-specialist capabilities that provide true understanding and powerful insights into the actions, opinions and motivations of citizens, consumers, patients, customers or employees. We serve more than 5000 clients across the world with 75 business solutions.

Founded in France in 1975, Ipsos is listed on the Euronext Paris since July 1st, 1999. The company is part of the SBF 120 and the Mid-60 index and is eligible for the Deferred Settlement Service (SRD).

ISIN code FR0000073298, Reuters ISOS.PA, Bloomberg IPS:FP


The author(s)

  • Mallory Newall Vice President, US, Public Affairs