Zika Concerns Remain Stable Despite its Arrival on the Mainland (POLL)

Public concerns in the United States about the Zika virus have held steady.

ByABC News
August 8, 2016, 2:06 PM

— -- Public concerns in the United States about the Zika virus have held steady despite its arrival on the mainland, with about one in three Americans in an ABC News/Washington Post poll expressing worry that they or someone in their immediate family might be infected.

Concern about catching the disease peaks, at 41 percent, in the Gulf and East Coast states.

See PDF with full results here.

Beyond personal concern, seven in 10 nationally express confidence in the federal government’s ability to respond effectively, despite funding clashes. That may reflect success battling previous disease threats over the years, including Ebola, the swine and avian flus and SARS.

Confidence in the government’s response is just slightly lower on the Gulf and East coasts, 65 percent vs. 71 percent elsewhere.

The poll, produced for ABC by Langer Research Associates, finds no significant change in attitudes since late June despite Zika’s arrival on the mainland, with 16 locally occurring cases reported in Florida as well as others among individuals who’ve traveled to the Caribbean or Latin America. The virus can cause birth defects, among other complications.

Worry about catching the virus is higher among traditionally disadvantaged groups: nonwhites (45 percent), those earning less than $50,000 a year (42 percent) and those who have a high school education or less (41 percent). Fewer higher-income earners express concern, 28 percent, as do three in 10 more-educated people and whites.


This ABC News/Washington Post poll was conducted by landline and cellular telephone Aug. 1-4, 2016, in English and Spanish, among a random national sample of 1,002 adults. Results have a margin of sampling error of 3.5 points, including the design effect.

The survey was produced for ABC News by Langer Research Associates of New York, N.Y., with sampling, data collection and tabulation by Abt-SRBI of New York, N.Y. See details on the survey’s methodology here.