By Jared Gomes
The Health Quality Council Of Alberta (HQCA) has released their results for the survey they conducted on May 25 to June 29 of 2020.
During the time of the survey schools, recreation centres and public facilities were closed. Many Albertans were working remotely and there were many reported cases in Alberta with the majority being in Calgary.
Over 11,000 Albertans took part in the survey with results being weighted to represent Albertans on age, gender and Alberta Health Services zones.
Sixty five per cent of Albertans felt they were well protected against COVID-19 with many reasons stating why. Most said that they were following the guidelines and in a safe environment with others that were also following the guidelines, but felt their environment was not safe.
Some stated they don’t believe that they’ll contract the virus, as they believe COVID-19 does not occur in their area.
One controversial point during this pandemic has been concerning restrictions. On May 27, 30 per cent of people stated that they believed that the restrictions concerning COVID-19 went too far, while only 19 per cent believed that restrictions did not go far enough.
Over time, with fluctuating opinions on June 27 the poll currently stands at 9 per cent believing restrictions went too far, while 21 per cent now believe that they did not go far enough.
Not only were there physical issues caused by restrictions, but Albertans also faced many mental issues. Of those surveyed, 60 per cent of respondents said that their mental health had worsened due to the pandemic. Despite this fact the majority didn’t report a change in their alcohol and cannabis consumption.
Virtual healthcare has started to be implemented as a means for people to continue care while isolated in their own homes. A total of 74 per cent of Albertans found that the information that they obtained from the meetings was helpful despite being different than it would be in person. Some people might even prefer that help remain virtual with 62 per cent of Albertans saying that the virtual visits would be a good alternative in the future.
A majority of people have been checking the news at least once a day to keep updated on everything COVID-19 related. Along with checking the news, Albertans found that Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Deena Hinshaw, was one of the most trustworthy sources to get their information from. The second and third most trustworthy sources, according to the survey, were the AHS website and Alberta Health Link respectively.
Another survey is currently being conducted, and will again be shared with the public, but also provincial leaders so they can reflect on the data and consider opportunities for improvement in the coming months.