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Evolving public behavior and attitudes towards COVID-19 and face masks in Taiwan: A social media study.
Chin, Chih-Yu; Liu, Chang-Pan; Wang, Cheng-Lung.
  • Chin CY; Department of Information Management, Chung Yuan Christian University, Taoyuan, Taiwan.
  • Liu CP; Department of Internal Medicine, MacKay Memorial Hospital, Taipei, Taiwan.
  • Wang CL; Department of Medicine, MacKay Medical College, New Taipei, Taiwan.
PLoS One ; 16(5): e0251845, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1236589
Semantic information from SemMedBD (by NLM)
1. COVID-19 AFFECTS Citizen
Subject
COVID-19
Predicate
AFFECTS
Object
Citizen
2. COVID-19 AFFECTS Citizen
Subject
COVID-19
Predicate
AFFECTS
Object
Citizen
ABSTRACT
Facing the COVID-19 pandemic, Taiwan demonstrated resilience at the initial stage of epidemic prevention, and effectively slowed down its spread. This study aims to document public epidemic awareness of COVID-19 in Taiwan through collecting social media- and Internet-based data, and provide valuable experience of Taiwan's response to COVID-19, involving citizens, news media, and the government, to aid the public in overcoming COVID-19, or infectious diseases that may emerge in the future. The volume of Google searches related to COVID-19 and face masks was regarded as an indicator of public epidemic awareness in the study. A time-series analysis was used to explore the relationships among public epidemic awareness and other COVID-19 relevant variables, which were collected based on big data analysis. Additionally, the content analysis was adopted to analyze the transmission of different types of fear information related to COVID-19 and their effects on the public. Our results indicate that public epidemic awareness was significantly correlated with the number of confirmed cases in Taiwan and the number of news reports on COVID-19 (correlation coefficient .33-.56). Additionally, the findings from the content analysis suggested that the fear of the loss of control best explains why panic behavior occurs among the public. When confronting the highly infectious COVID-19, public epidemic awareness is vital. While fear is an inevitable result when an emerging infectious disease occurs, the government can convert resistance into assistance by understanding why fear arises and which fear factors cause excessive public panic. Moreover, in the digitalization era, online and social media activities could reflect public epidemic awareness that can e harnessed for epidemic control.
Subject(s)

Full text: Available Collection: International databases Database: MEDLINE Main subject: Attitude / Communicable Disease Control / Pandemics / Social Media / COVID-19 / Masks Type of study: Experimental Studies / Observational study / Qualitative research Limits: Humans Country/Region as subject: Asia Language: English Journal: PLoS One Journal subject: Science / Medicine Year: 2021 Document Type: Article Affiliation country: Journal.pone.0251845

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Full text: Available Collection: International databases Database: MEDLINE Main subject: Attitude / Communicable Disease Control / Pandemics / Social Media / COVID-19 / Masks Type of study: Experimental Studies / Observational study / Qualitative research Limits: Humans Country/Region as subject: Asia Language: English Journal: PLoS One Journal subject: Science / Medicine Year: 2021 Document Type: Article Affiliation country: Journal.pone.0251845