Common misconceptions regarding COVID-19 among health care professionals: an online global cross-sectional survey.
AbstractBackground: The COVID-19 pandemic has taken the world by storm, with cases continuously increasing by the hour and with a shortage of information regarding the virus available to the general public. Despite the availability of trusted online sources, there are still misconceptions relating to the virus floating around. This study aimed to find out the level of misconceptions among healthcare professionals (HCPs) worldwide about the ensuing COVID-19 pandemic. Materials and Methods: A descriptive cross sectional study was conducted through a global online survey. The self-administered questionnaire was designed and registered at an online website (Kwiksurveys). A total of 652 participants from 35 different countries across the world responded. Statistical analysis was performed using SPSS version 23. Socio-demographic and discipline characteristics were compared with the help of the chi-square test and univariate and multivariate logistic regression to find significant relationships. Results: Among all HCPs, general physicians (61.2%) were the most common respondents. The responses from females (63.3%) almost doubled those of men, and nearly half of the participants were working in private institutes (49.2%). Additionally, the major source of information used by HCPs about COVID-19 was social media (55.4%). Regarding misconception assessment, 71.6% of participants had correct concepts regarding COVID-19. However, 28.4% had incorrect information. Female HCPs were 1.49 times more likely to have correct concepts compared to males (OR=1.49, 95% CI=1.04-2.14). Conclusions: The majority of the HCPs were keeping themselves up-to-date with current information concerning the knowledge, prevention, and hygiene practices of COVID-19 infection. However, some misconceptions are deeply rooted in the mindsets of HCPs worldwide and need to be addressed by the continuous professional development of HCPs. The availability of reliable sources of information on the pandemic should be encouraged, with adequate explanations also available to the general public in simple terms.
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