Media Effect on Saudi Community’s Knowledge, Attitude and Practice Towards COVID-19: Comparative Cross-Sectional Study
Keywords:Attitude, COVID-19, Knowledge, Media as a Source of Information, Practice
Background: As public health officials seek to contain the virus and mitigate the deleterious effects on worldwide population health and despite many awareness programs conducted by the governments and other agencies, there are certain false beliefs among the general public towards COVID-19. Objectives: To assess the effect of media on Knowledge, Attitude and Practice (KAP) towards COVID-19 among Saudi community with determining factors affecting their level. Methods: A comparative cross-sectional study based on online questionnaire was conducted. A voluntary response sample (651) of males and females aged 18-60 years was included using a structured pre-coded closed-ended, pilot tested Arabic questionnaire including demographic data, source of information, knowledge, attitude and practice towards COVID-19. The participants were divided into Group 1 whose source of information with unsatisfactory, but group 2 with satisfactory one. A univariate analysis Chi-square test, independent t-test and Spearman’s rank correlation were used. Results: The overall mean (SD) knowledge score was 64.9% (5.74); with significant difference between the two groups (p = 0.036). The overall mean (SD) attitude score was 62.6% (14.81); with significant difference between the two groups (p = 0.039). The overall mean (SD) practice score was 57.8% (7.64); with significant difference between the two groups (p = 0.046). Conclusion: Two thirds of the study participants with unsatisfactory source of information, although most of them have average knowledge, positive attitudes and good practices toward COVID-19. As infected cases are rapidly increasing worldwide, it is essential to improve the knowledge, attitude and practices among Saudi community to limit COVID-19 spread. Although with the tangible efforts by the Saudi Ministry of Health, there is a need to increase the public awareness about the seriousness of this pandemic situation through trustable sources of information.
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