Skip to main content

Table 2 Change in affective response, knowledge, and cognitive response in the two consecutive surveys about EVD

From: Changes in risk perceptions during the 2014 Ebola virus disease epidemic: results of two consecutive surveys among the general population in Lower Saxony, Germany

  First survey Second survey Difference p value
Affective response
Percentage of participants who are worried...
 about EVD. 27.3% 2.7% 24.6% < 0.001
 that in the next three months people might arrive in Germany who are identified as infected persons after their entry. 77.0% 27.6% 49.4% < 0.001
 that individual persons might be infected with the Ebola virus in Germany during the next six months. 57.7% 19.7% 38.0% < 0.001
 that in the next six months Ebola could spread in the general population of Germany similar to how it is spreading currently in Western Africa. 3.2% 1.3% 1.9% 0.015
Knowledge     
Percentage of participants who answer correctly     
 By direct contact with bodily fluids of infected persons, either dead or living 94.3% 96.1% −1.8% 0.11
 By direct contact with infected, but asymptomatic persons 26.6% 8.4% 18.2% < 0.001
 Through air, if infected people cough or sneeze 27.6% 18.3% 9.3% < 0.001
 Through material which has been heavily contaminated with bodily fluids of dead or living infected persons 84.8% 80.2% 4.6% 0.015
 Through drinking water 66.4% 55.1% 11.3% < 0.001
 Through food produced in Germany 96.7% 93.7% 3.0% 0.0068
 By casual contact with someone already sick, such as sitting next to the person (without any direct contact of bodily fluids) 59.6% 51.3% 8.3% < 0.001
 By wild animals in Africa (monkeys, bats) 50.3% 55.2% −4.9% 0.021
 By wild animals in Germany (rats, foxes) 79.0% 81.8% −2.8% 0.14
 By insects in Africa (mosquitoes, tsetse flies) 57.9% 53.3% 4.6% 0.053
 By insects in Germany (midges) 85.1% 85.4% −0.3% 0.92
Cognitive response: likelihood of infection
Percentage of participants who think that they have a personal risk of acquiring Ebola…
 at work. 9.3% 3.9% 5.4% < 0.001
 in public transport. 16.4% 7.4% 9.0% < 0.001
 in public places (school, childcare …) or public events. 16.6% 8.5% 8.1% < 0.001
 at an airport in Germany. 37.4% 21.6% 15.8% < 0.001
 as a patient in a German hospital. 14.8% 8.9% 5.9% < 0.001
 at a doctor’s office in Germany. 16.2% 8.1% 8.1% < 0.001
 during a travel to affected countries. 72.3% 57.3% 15.0% < 0.001
Cognitive response: personal impact     
Percentage of participants who would…     
 avoid public events and crowded places. 15.1% 14.6% 0.5% 0.77
 avoid using public transport. 14.7% 13.1% 1.6% 0.29
 avoid physical contact with other people. 33.9% 30.3% 3.6% 0.086
 pay more attention to hygiene (e.g. wash hands more often). 66.6% 61.0% 5.6% 0.0091
 wear a face mask outside of my home. 1.1% 1.8% −0.7% 0.33
 not want to be admitted to the same hospital. 49.4% 42.5% 6.9% < 0.001
 not visit friends admitted to the same hospital. 26.8% 20.9% 5.9% 0.0024
Cognitive response: coping efficacy
Percentage of participants who support specific measure to prevent the spread of EVD to Europe
 Provide information on EVD for all travellers coming from affected areas and advice in case of developing symptoms 97.2% 93.6% 3.6% 0.0018
 Get personal information of all travellers coming from affected areas and control their health three weeks long 68.9% 49.9% 19.0% < 0.001
 Forbid return transport of Germans getting infected during assistance intervention in Western Africa 8.5% 8.6% −0.1% 0.9
 Forbid bringing EVD patients for treatment to Germany 24.8% 23.3% 1.5% 0.43
 Measure temperature of all travellers coming from affected countries when they arrive in Europe with subsequent quarantine for those with high temperature 58.4% 39.2% 19.2% < 0.001
 Measure temperature of all travellers coming from affected countries when they leave Africa with subsequent quarantine for those with high temperature 53.3% 41.4% 11.9% < 0.001
 Mandatory quarantine for all volunteers returning from assistance intervention in Western Africa 38.5% 28.4% 10.1% < 0.001
 Visa ban for people from affected countries 16.9% 7.7% 9.2% < 0.001
 Forbid traveling from Germany to affected countries in Africa 15.5% 8.3% 7.2% < 0.001
 Compulsory vaccination against Ebola for all inhabitants of affected countries as soon as a vaccine is available 86.6% 88.3% −1.7% 0.29