Knowledge and attitudes about influenza and the common cold in Syria post COVID-19: A qualitative study

Sarya Swed, Hidar Alibrahim, Mhd Amin Alzabibi, Mosa Shibani, Mostafa Hasoon, Haidara Bohsas, Hasan Raslan, Sham Alholiby, Lilas Channiss, Shahm Azzam Alsakka, Rana Alkassab, Salwa Abdulrahman Barou, Aya Kelzia, Hala Al-Abboud, Fatima Naal, Aya Mtanos Jarrous, Nagham Jawish, Schasa Monaf Suliman, Sedra Dashan, Weaam EsmaeelBaraa Shebli, Weaam Ezzedean, Fateh Kashkash, Abdullah Khouri, Bisher Sawaf, Ameer Kakaje, Ruby M. Kearney, Sherief Ghozy

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Background: The common cold and the influenza are common infections that are frequent in the community. In this study, we estimate the level of knowledge regarding those diseases among the Syrian population in the COVID era as it is important to have this knowledge for future health planning and policies. Methods: A qualitative study was conducted from November to December in 2021. A structured self-administered questionnaire was distributed as Google Forms on social media platforms and hard copies of the questionnaire to patients, their companions, or workers in public hospitals. Chi-square test and Mann Whitney test were used to study the associations between categorical groups. Results: This study included 13013 participants, 7856 (60.4%) were females, 78.4% were younger than 31 years old, only 3518 (27%) knew that the common cold and the influenza were caused by viruses, 6146 (47.2%) reported that runny nose was the most annoying symptom, 75.6% of the participants believed that antibiotics could kill viruses, and 7674 (58.9%) had fears from symptoms of common cold and influenza because of covid-19. Females were statistically significantly more knowledgeable and had more fears from the infection compared with males. Conclusion: This study showed a low level of knowledge among the Syrian population. The view of influenza and common cold have changed after COVID as they are now taken more seriously. Many efforts should be made to spread awareness, effective management, and reducing antibiotic misinformation.

Original languageEnglish
Article number104166
JournalAnnals of Medicine and Surgery
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2022


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