Conspiracy theories about COVID-19 are popular in Slovakia and are significantly affecting the vaccination rate in the country, which is the third-lowest in the EU after Bulgaria and Romania, a recent poll carried out by the Slovak Academy of Sciences shows.
The poll asked respondents about the six most widespread conspiracy theories about COVID-19. Approximately 40% of people agreed with all of them.
The most popular theory is that the government artificially overestimates the number of deaths. This opinion is agreed upon by 43.3% of respondents. Slightly less people (42.4%) think coronavirus was manufactured in a laboratory. 39.7% of respondents believe that pandemic was created to control people more easily. More than a quarter (26.1%) think vaccines are meant to harm humans, and 22.5% do not believe coronavirus exists.
The poll also found that conspiracy theories are slightly more prevalent among men and the rural, older population.
There is a significant link between vaccination and belief in conspiracy theories. Among those who disagreed with all of these theories, approximately 81% are vaccinated. Among those who agreed with at least one, only 26.7% are vaccinated. Among those who agreed with all of them, only 8.3% are vaccinated.
(Michal Hudec | EURACTIV.sk)