Is this why Australia is crushing the coronavirus curve? Extraordinary survey shows 98 per cent of the country are practising social distancing
- ABS releases first survey results into the impact of coronavirus on households
- 1059 Australians surveyed about jobs, social distancing, self-isolation and health
- 98 per cent practising social distancing while 88 per cent avoid public spaces
- ABS will release more data in early May, including use of stimulus payments
- Learn more about how to help people impacted by COVID
New survey data may shed light on why Australia has so successfully flattened the coronavirus curve.
The Australian Bureau of Statistics released the results of its first survey on the impact of the pandemic on households across the country on Monday, the same day the country recorded 13 new cases of COVID-19.
About 1,059 Australians took part in the ABS telephone survey in the first week of April about the impact on jobs, hours worked, health precautions, hygiene, social distancing, self-isolation, flu vaccination and travel.
Australia recorded 13 new cases of the virus on Monday with six from New South Wales, five in Tasmania and one each in ACT and Victoria
An ABS survey has revealed that most Australians are obeying newly enforced public health guidelines. Pictured is Sydney’s Coogee Beach on Monday after it was reopened for exercise
A massive 98 per cent of those surveyed said they had been practising social distancing, while 88 per cent were taking the lockdown seriously by avoiding public spaces and events.
About 87 per cent have cancelled personal gatherings in the previous four weeks.
‘The majority of Australians are adhering to public health guidelines to prevent the spread of COVID-19,’ ABS household surveys program manager Michelle Marquardt said.
Australia recorded 13 new cases of the virus on Monday with six from New South Wales, five in Tasmania and one each in ACT and Victoria.
Despite the plummeting rate of new cases, more than two-thirds (68 per cent) of Australians remain concerned about their health amid the outbreak which has claimed 71 lives in the last three months.
Around 98 per cent of those surveyed said they had been practising social distancing. Pictured are police enforcing the law in Sydney’s eastern suburbs on Saturday
Almost nine in ten Australians (87 per cent) are washing their hands and/or using sanitiser more than usual.
Around half are heeding advice to not touch their face while one in six (17 per cent) wear a face mask whenever they leave the home for essential purposes.
* At the start of April, 68% of people were concerned or very concerned about their personal health due to the spread of COVID-19.
* Almost everyone reported that they were keeping their distance from other people (98%) with many also avoiding public spaces and events (88%) and cancelling plans to gather with friends and family (87%).
* At the start of April, 63% of people in Australia over the age of 18 had a job.
* One in four people (26%) who had a job in the first week of April worked less hours than usual in the previous week, whilst 13% worked more hours than usual.
Source: Australian Bureau of Statistics
Already 2.2 million have have had a flu vaccination this year while another 12.2 million intend to be jabbed as the winter flu season draws closer.
More than half (52 per cent) of Australians changed or cancelled their travel plans in March as Australia and other countries around the world went into lockdown.
On the job front, around 12 per cent of employed Australians were working more hours than usual as a result of coronavirus while almost a quarter (24 per cent) were working less.
‘The survey found that the proportion of people who had a job fell by three percentage points between early March and early April’ Ms Marquardt said.
Two thirds (66 per cent) of surveyed Australians had a job in the first week of March, which dropped to 63 per cent by early April.
The ABS have since contacted surveyed households for follow up questions on their current job situation, how government stimulus payments were spent, financial and psychological impacts and how they communicate with friends and family.
The ABS will release data from the second survey in early May and plans to provide further detail from surveyed households over the coming months.
Almost a quarter (24 per cent) of employed Australians are now working less hours as a result of the coronavirus crisis. Pictured are queues outside a Centerlink in Melbourne on Monday