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BMJ Open. Influence of trust on two different risk perceptions as an affective and cognitive dimension during Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) outbreak in South Korea: serial cross-sectional surveys

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  • BMJ Open. Influence of trust on two different risk perceptions as an affective and cognitive dimension during Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) outbreak in South Korea: serial cross-sectional surveys


    BMJ Open. 2020 Mar 4;10(3):e033026. doi: 10.1136/bmjopen-2019-033026. Influence of trust on two different risk perceptions as an affective and cognitive dimension during Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) outbreak in South Korea: serial cross-sectional surveys.

    Jang WM1, Kim UN2,3, Jang DH4, Jung H1,3, Cho S3, Eun SJ5, Lee JY6,7.
    Author information

    Abstract

    OBJECTIVES:

    This study aimed to assess the affective and cognitive risk perceptions in the general population of Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) during the 2015 MERS coronavirus (MERS-CoV) outbreak in South Korea and the influencing factors.
    DESIGN:

    Serial cross-sectional design with four consecutive surveys.
    SETTING:

    Nationwide general population in South Korea.
    PARTICIPANTS:

    Overall 4010 respondents (aged 19 years and over) from the general population during the MERS-CoV epidemic were included.
    PRIMARY AND SECONDARY OUTCOME MEASURES:

    The main outcome measures were (1) affective risk perception, (2) cognitive risk perception, and (3) trust in the government. Multivariate logistic regression models were used to identify factors (demographic, socioeconomic, area and political orientation) associated with risk perceptions.
    RESULTS:

    Both affective and cognitive risk perceptions decreased as the MERS-CoV epidemic progressed. Proportions of affective risk perception were higher in all surveys and slowly decreased compared with cognitive risk perception over time. Females (adjusted OR (aOR) 1.72-2.00; 95% CI 1.14 to 2.86) and lower self-reported household economic status respondents were more likely to perceive the affective risk. The older the adults, the higher the affective risk perception, but the lower the cognitive risk perception compared with younger adults. The respondents who had low trust in the government had higher affective (aOR 2.19-3.11; 95 CI 1.44 to 4.67) and cognitive (aOR 3.55-5.41; 95 CI 1.44 to 9.01) risk perceptions.
    CONCLUSIONS:

    This study suggests that even if cognitive risk perception is dissolved, affective risk perception can continue during MERS-CoV epidemic. Risk perception associating factors (ie, gender, age and self-reported household economic status) appear to be noticeably different between affective and cognitive dimensions. It also indicates that trust in the government influences affective risk perception and cognitive risk perception. There is a need for further efforts to understand the mechanism regarding the general public's risk perception for effective risk communication.
    Author(s) (or their employer(s)) 2020. Re-use permitted under CC BY-NC. No commercial re-use. See rights and permissions. Published by BMJ.


    KEYWORDS:

    Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus; epidemics; risk and perception; surveys

    PMID: 32139484 DOI: 10.1136/bmjopen-2019-033026
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