A Cross-sectional Survey to Study the Awareness and the Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic in the Field Practice Area of the Rural Health Centre of a Teaching Hospital
Introduction: COVID-19 is a global pandemic which has affected the whole world. The first confirmed case of coronavirus in India was reported on January 30, 2020, and has now rapidly spread all over the country. India has taken preventive measures such as the national lockdown, mass-scale screening, health education through mass media, and social platforms. The study aims to estimate the awareness levels in the area (village) regarding COVID-19 and to assess the strategies adopted by the area to combat the challenges posed by COVID-19. Methods: A cross-sectional survey was conducted in the outreach villages of the Rural Health Center, Nere, Panvel, of Dr. D.Y. Patil Medical College, Navi Mumbai, Maharashtra. Results: A total of 350 individuals were interviewed during the study. More than 75% of the population was aware that there is a pandemic. All the people surveyed were aware of the fact that the virus was spread by coughing, sneezing, and fomites. The whole surveyed population was aware that wearing of a mask and handwashing were ways to prevent transmission of the disease and more than 80% of the population was aware that sanitizer use and social distancing were also helpful in preventing spread. Special strategies like home quarantine of the suspected COVID 19 cases and sanitization of the villages were adopted by the village administration to control the spread of the disease. Conclusions: Overall, the majority of the surveyed population had good knowledge about the pandemic and the measures to prevent it.
Key words: Awareness, COVID-19, impact, pandemic, rural area
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