Coronavirus and the social impacts on Great Britain: 7 August 2020

Indicators from the Opinions and Lifestyle Survey covering the period 29 July to 2 August 2020 to understand the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic on people, households and communities in Great Britain.

This is not the latest release. View latest release

Cyswllt:
Email Ruth Davies

Dyddiad y datganiad:
7 August 2020

Cyhoeddiad nesaf:
14 August 2020

1. Main points

  • This week, almost all adults (96%) who had left their homes said they had worn a face covering to slow the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) – an increase from 84% last week and 71% the week before.

  • Almost 4 in 10 adults (37%) said they would feel comfortable or very comfortable eating indoors at a restaurant this week, an increase from last week (34%).

  • Of those adults who had left their homes this week, more than 1 in 5 (21%) said they had visited a café, pub or restaurant, an increase from 10% three weeks ago (period covering 8 July to 12 July 2020).

  • Over 4 in 10 adults (41%) reported that the coronavirus was affecting their well-being this week; of these adults, 14% reported that they were worried about a possible job loss.

  • Over half of adults (53%) reported they currently see family members less than they did prior to the coronavirus pandemic, despite the easing of restrictions.

  • Almost 7 in 10 adults (69%) said they would feel comfortable or very comfortable to attend an appointment with a healthcare professional in person, however fewer people reported that they would feel comfortable or very comfortable if they were attending a hospital appointment (61%) or Accident and Emergency (A&E) (55%).

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2. Understanding the impact on society

This weekly bulletin contains data and indicators from a new module being undertaken through the Office for National Statistics' (ONS's) Opinions and Lifestyle Survey (OPN) to understand the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic on British society.

The statistics in this publication are based on a survey of 2,500 adults aged 16 years and over in Great Britain conducted between 29 July and 2 August 2020 (inclusive). Results this week are based on 1,235 responding adults (49% response rate).

It contains breakdowns of results by sex and for identified "at-risk" groups that have been advised to take additional precautions. This includes those aged 70 years and over and those with certain underlying health conditions. The full list of conditions is included in the Glossary.

This bulletin presents a summary of results, with further data including confidence intervals for the estimates contained in the associated datasets. Where changes in results from previous weeks are presented in this bulletin, associated confidence intervals should be used to assess the statistical significance of the change.

Throughout this bulletin, "this week" refers to the period 29 July to 2 August 2020 and "last week" refers to the period 22 to 26 July 2020.

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3. Leaving home

Of adults in Great Britain, over 9 in 10 (92%) said they had left their home for any reason in the past seven days, a similar proportion to last week (94%).

Each week we ask people the reasons they had left their homes. Some of the reasons people list are looked at in more detail in this section.

!

Official guidance varies across England, Wales and Scotland. This section gives the reasons people are leaving their home, but an estimate of compliance is not provided.

Eating out and leisure

As lockdown restrictions are gradually lifted, respondents were asked how comfortable they would feel to participate in a variety of leisure activities, including eating in restaurants.

Nearly 4 in 10 adults (37%) said they would feel comfortable or very comfortable to eat indoors at a restaurant this week, an increase from 34% last week. Of those people who had left their homes this week, almost 1 in 5 (21%) said they had visited a pub, restaurant or café, an increase from 1 in 10 (10%) three weeks ago (period covering 8 July to 12 July 2020).

At the time of the survey, restaurants were able to serve food indoors in England and Scotland, however, restaurants in Wales were able to re-open indoors from 3 August, which was after this survey had been conducted.

Just under 1 in 5 adults (17%) said they would feel comfortable or very comfortable to visit an indoor gym – an increase from 12% last week. This week, 15% of adults reported they would feel comfortable or very comfortable visiting an indoor swimming pool or water park compared with 13% last week, while 18% felt comfortable or very comfortable visiting an outdoor swimming pool or water park – a similar proportion to last week (19%).

Outdoor pools were able to re-open in England from 11 July, followed by indoor gyms and pools on 25 July. Pools and gyms are not yet open in Wales or Scotland.

Working

Almost half of working adults (49%) said the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic was having an impact on their work this week – a decrease when compared with last week (57%).

Over 4 in 10 adults (41%) reported that the coronavirus was affecting their well-being this week, and of these adults, 14% reported that they were worried about a possible job loss, and 1 in 10 (10%) reported they were worried about returning to work.

Of all working adults, over three-quarters (76%) said they had either worked at home or travelled to work this week – a small decrease when compared with last week (78%). Over half of working adults (51%) reported they had travelled to work in the past seven days, while one-quarter (25%) had worked exclusively at home.

Official estimates of labour market participation can be found in the Labour market overview.

More detailed information on changes to labour market participation can be found in Coronavirus and the latest indicators for the UK economy and society: 6 August 2020.

More about coronavirus

  • Find the latest on coronavirus (COVID-19) in the UK.
  • All ONS analysis, summarised in our coronavirus roundup.
  • View all coronavirus data.
  • Find out how we are working safely in our studies and surveys.

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    4. Face coverings and support for government measures

    In the past seven days, almost all adults (96%) who had left their homes said they had worn a face covering to slow the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) – up from 84% last week and 71% the week before. The proportion of people wearing face coverings outside of their homes varies between England, Scotland and Wales, although all three countries have seen an increase in the reporting of face coverings being worn over the past five weeks.

    Of those who had been shopping this week, almost all (95%) said they had worn a face covering.

    At the time of the survey, it was mandatory to wear face coverings while shopping in Scotland and England. In Scotland, 97% had worn face coverings when shopping in the last seven days, 96% of adults had done so in England, and 70% in Wales (where it is not mandatory to wear them).

    Respondents were asked this week to what extent they supported or opposed the mandatory wearing of face coverings in shops and supermarkets, with over 6 in 10 adults (62%) reporting that they strongly supported the mandatory wearing of face coverings in these places.

    It became mandatory to wear face coverings on public transport in England on 15 June, in Scotland on 22 June and in Wales on 27 July. Of those adults in Great Britain who had used public transport in the past seven days, 85% reported they had worn a face covering while doing so.

    We also asked adults this week whether they supported the targeted lockdown measures for local areas affected by coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreaks, and over half (53%) reported that they strongly supported these measures. Those aged 70 years and over were most likely to strongly support local lockdown measures (68%), followed by people living in Scotland (62%), and those with a specific health condition (57%).

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    5. Socialising and contact with others

    More than 7 in 10 adults (72%) met up with other people to socialise this week – a similar proportion to last week (73%). Just under half of adults (45%) reported that family or friends had visited them at home this week. Of those adults who had met up with other people to socialise this week, over half (52%) said they always maintained social distancing, but 6% said they never maintained social distancing, or didn't very often. For those aged 70 years and over, three-quarters (75%) said they always maintained social distancing when meeting up with other people.

    As lockdown restrictions begin easing in some areas of Great Britain, we asked people if they now see or visit family and friends more often than they did before the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

    Over half of adults (53%) reported they currently see family members less than they did prior to the start of the coronavirus pandemic, despite the easing of restrictions. Similarly, 64% of adults reported that they are currently seeing friends less than they were before the coronavirus pandemic.

    We also asked adults about the amount of virtual contact they had with friends and family during the lockdown period.

    Over 6 in 10 adults (62%) reported they had chatted on the phone or online with family members more during the lockdown than they did prior to the coronavirus pandemic. Of those adults who had chatted to family members over the phone or online during lockdown, almost 6 in 10 (59%) reported that they still speak to their family members the same amount as they did during lockdown.

    Over half of adults (52%) reported they had spoken with friends either over the phone or online more during lockdown than they had prior to the start of the coronavirus pandemic, with 41% reporting they spoke to friends the same amount that they had before the coronavirus pandemic.

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    6. Health and well-being

    This week we asked adults how comfortable they feel to seek medical advice both remotely, and in person.

    Over 7 in 10 adults (72%) said they would feel comfortable or very comfortable to seek medical advice from a healthcare professional over the telephone, and two-thirds (66%) said they would feel comfortable or very comfortable to attend an online appointment with a healthcare professional.

    Almost 7 in 10 adults (69%) said they would feel comfortable or very comfortable to attend an appointment in person with a healthcare professional, however, fewer people reported that they would feel comfortable or very comfortable if they were attending a hospital appointment or Accident and Emergency (A&E).

    Just over 6 in 10 adults (61%) reported that they would feel comfortable or very comfortable attending a hospital appointment if their doctor asked them to, and over half (55%) reported they would feel this way attending A&E with an urgent health concern.

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    7. Coronavirus and the social impacts on Great Britain data

    Coronavirus and the social impacts on Great Britain
    Dataset | Released 31 July 2020
    Indicators from the Opinions and Lifestyle Survey (OPN) to understand the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic on people, households and communities in Great Britain. Includes breakdowns by at-risk age, sex and underlying health condition.

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    8. Glossary

    Underlying health condition

    In this bulletin, adults with an underlying health condition include those with:

    • Alzheimer's disease or dementia

    • angina or a long-term heart problem

    • asthma

    • a learning disability such as autism spectrum disorder (ASD) or Asperger's (Asperger syndrome)

    • conditions affecting the brain and nerves, such as Parkinson's disease

    • cancer

    • chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) or a long-term lung problem

    • diabetes

    • kidney or liver disease

    • a weakened immune system such as the result of conditions as HIV and AIDS, or medicines such as steroid tablets or treatment for cancer

    • problems with your spleen – for example, sickle cell disease, or if you have had your spleen removed

    • being overweight (having a BMI of 40 or above)

    • an organ transplant

    • stroke or cerebral haemorrhage or cerebral thrombosis

    • rheumatoid arthritis

    Working adults

    For this survey, a person is said to be a "working adult" if:

    • they had a paid job, either as an employee or self-employed

    • they did any casual work for payment

    • they did any unpaid or voluntary work in the previous week

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    9. Measuring the data

    The Opinions and Lifestyle Survey (OPN) is a monthly omnibus survey. In response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, we have adapted the OPN to become a weekly survey used to collect data on the impact of the coronavirus on day-to-day life in Great Britain. In this wave, 2,500 individuals were sampled, with a response rate of 49% (or 1,235 individuals) for the survey conducted from 29 July to 2 August 2020.

    The survey results are weighted to be a nationally representative sample for Great Britain, and data are collected using an online self-completion questionnaire. Individuals who did not want to or were unable to complete the survey online had the opportunity to take part over the phone.

    Where changes in results from previous weeks or differences between groups are presented in this bulletin, associated confidence intervals, which are included in the associated datasets, indicate their significance.

    More quality and methodology information on strengths, limitations, appropriate uses, and how the data were created is available in the Opinions and Lifestyle Survey (OPN) QMI.

    Sampling

    A sample of 2,500 households were randomly selected from those that had previously completed the Labour Market Survey (LMS). From each household, one adult was selected at random but with unequal probability. Younger people were given higher selection probability than older people because of under-representation in the sample available for the survey.

    Further information on the sample design can be found in the OPN QMI.

    Weighting

    The responding sample contained 1,235 individuals (49% response rate). Survey weights were applied to make estimates representative of the population.

    Weights were first adjusted for non-response and attrition. Subsequently, the weights were calibrated to satisfy population distributions considering the following factors: sex by age, region, tenure, and highest qualification, employment status, National Statistics Socio-economic Classification (NS-SEC) group and smoking status. For age, sex and region, population totals based on projections of mid-year population estimates for July 2020 were used. The resulting weighted sample is therefore representative of the Great Britain adult population by a number of socio-demographic factors and geography.

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    10. Strengths and limitations

    The main strengths of the Opinions and Lifestyle Survey (OPN) include:

    • it allows for timely production of data and statistics that can respond quickly to changing needs

    • it meets data needs: the questionnaire is developed with customer consultation, and design expertise is applied in the development stages

    • robust methods are adopted for the survey's sampling and weighting strategies to limit the impact of bias

    • quality assurance procedures are undertaken throughout the analysis stages to minimise the risk of error

    The main limitations of the OPN include:

    • the sample size is relatively small: 2,500 individuals per week with fewer completed interviews, meaning that detailed analyses for subnational geographies and other sub-groups are not possible

    • comparisons between periods and groups must be done with caution as estimates are provided from a sample survey; as such, confidence intervals are included in the datasets to present the sampling variability, which should be taken into account when assessing differences between periods, as true differences may not exist

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    Manylion cyswllt ar gyfer y Bwletin ystadegol

    Ruth Davies
    policy.evidence.analysis@ons.gov.uk
    Ffôn: +44 (0)1633 651663