Compliance with lockdown regulations during the COVID-19 pandemic in South Africa: findings from an online survey

SOURCE: The Open Public Health Journal
OUTPUT TYPE: Journal Article
TITLE AUTHOR(S): N.Dukhi, T.Mokhele, W.Parker, S.Ramlagan, R.Gaida, M.Mabaso, R.Sewpaul, S.Jooste, I.Naidoo, S.Parker, M.Moshabela, K.Zuma, P.Reddy
DEPARTMENT: Public Health, Societies and Belonging (HSC), Impact Centre (IC), Impact Centre (PRESS), Impact Centre (CC), Deputy CEO: Research (DCEO_R), Deputy CEO: Research (ERKC), Deputy CEO: Research (CGI)
Print: HSRC Library: shelf number 11875
HANDLE: 20.500.11910/15918

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SARS-CoV-2 has resulted in the COVID-19 pandemic. Based on a nationally representative online survey conducted several weeks on the pandemic, this paper explores how South Africans responded to the compliance regulations laid down by the national government and factors associated with individuals' confidence in their community adhering to lockdown regulations. The study was conducted using a closed-ended questionnaire on a data-free online platform. Additionally, a telephonic survey was included to accommodate individuals who do not have access to smart-phones. The study population consisted of respondents who were 18 years and older and living in South Africa (n=19 933). Data were benchmarked to the 2019 midyear population estimates. Descriptive statistics and bivariate logistic regression are presented. Over a quarter (26.1%) of respondents reported that they had not left home, indicating compliance with the COVID-19 control regulations, and 55.3% who did leave their homes did so to purchase essential items. A small proportion (1.2%) reported that they had visited friends. People, classified as coloured, those who were more literate (those with secondary, matric and tertiary education status), those residing in disadvantaged areas (informal settlements, townships, rural areas and farms), and those who perceived their risk of contracting COVID-19 as moderate and high, reported not being confident of their community adhering to lockdown. Communication strategies must be employed to ensure that important information regarding the pandemic be conveyed in the most important languages and be dispatched via various communication channels to reach as many people as possible.