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Year : 2020  |  Volume : 25  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 118-127

Anxiety related to COVID-19 infection: An online survey among the general public in India

Department of Psychiatry, Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh, India

Correspondence Address:
Sandeep Grover
Department of Psychiatry, Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh - 160 012
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jmhhb.jmhhb_141_20

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Background: There are widespread anxiety and fear related to contracting COVID-19 infection in the general public ever since the outbreak of COVID-19, which had now increased to a great extent due to the ever-rising number of positive cases and mortality rates associated with COVID-19. Aim: The present study aimed to evaluate the anxiety related to contracting COVID-19 infection in the public. Methodology: An online survey was conducted using the SurveyMonkey® platform-generated link in which a COVID-19 anxiety-specific questionnaire was used to assess anxiety and worry related to contracting COVID-19. A total of 462 responses were analyzed. About one-sixth (18.8%) of the responders reported anxiety in at least one domain and worry in at least one domain related to contracting COVID-19 infection. While 42.2% of the responders had anxiety in at least one domain, highest being in the domain of anxiety related to behaviors of others, about one-fourth of the responders (26.6%) expressed worry in at least one domain, more in the domain of worry related to family members going out to buy something or for work. Males and people of younger age group had significantly greater anxiety score, and those with a chronic physical illness had significantly greater worry score. Conclusion: The present study suggests that there is a heightened level of anxiety in the society due to COVID-19 and about 18.8% of the people may be having anxiety severe enough to require clinical attention. However, the survey findings should be interpreted well with regard to its limitations being circulated in few social media platforms and, therefore, may not be generalized to the entire country.

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