Wave 1: mid-March, before the lockdown

In Wave 1, in mid-March, before the lockdown, we found that:

  • 62% of adults in the UK have felt anxious or worried
    • This was highest among students (74%) and women (71%)
    • 30% have felt afraid and 22% panicked
  • Becoming ill (58%), Being separated from friends and family (if I have to self-isolate (54%) or if they have to self-isolate (55%)), and coping with the uncertainty (53%) were some key reasons of stress
    • People in lower social grades were much more concerned about accessing benefits than those in higher
    • Over 1 in 5 people (22%) not in formal employment, said they are caring for someone and worried about how they will cope if they, as carers, became infected
  • On a positive note, half (49%) of UK adults surveyed felt they could make a positive contribution to the efforts to limit the spread and impact of the pandemic, almost a third (29%) would volunteer if it didn’t increase their risk of catching it, and 1 in 6 (16%) planned to help someone living alone during the pandemic