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More people are heeding rules against the COVID-19 outbreak in Turkey, survey shows

More people are heeding rules against the COVID-19 outbreak in Turkey, survey shows

A lot has happened since March in Turkey amid the COVID-19 pandemic, but one thing remains the same: the call to wear masks, adhere to social distancing and practice hand hygiene. The public was once laxer in complying with these rules but a new survey indicates that more and more people are following them as the outbreak worsens. A pandemic “fatigue” has also apparently come into play as more people now believe it will take at least one year to overcome the deadly outbreak.

The results of the survey, commissioned by the ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party) and published by media outlets, also show rising interest in the COVID-19 vaccine among the public.

People not wearing masks were a common sight in the early months of the outbreak, but 97% of those participating in the survey say they are now wearing masks all the time while going out. Another 74% regularly used hand sanitizers while 65% shun taking mass transit, which is viewed as a potential ground for new infections. Around 73% of participants say they do not visit crowded places while another 71% stated that they never leave home unless necessary.

Only 1% of respondents said life has already returned to “normal,” and the majority of interviewees said it will take another year for life to normalize. The other respondents were more optimistic, believing the good old days when mask-wearing and other strict rules were not mandatory will be back in six months.

After strict restrictions in spring 2020, Turkey eased into a normalization process early in the summer. The nation’s number of patients steadily decreased, but as autumn began, a new surge in cases emerged. This forced authorities to bring back restrictions in November. In the ensuing two months, the number of cases started to decline though it occasionally fluctuates. Currently, the number of new daily cases remains below 10,000.