Coronavirus (COVID-19): shielding survey report - January 2021

Publication of results from a survey conducted between December 2020 and January 2021 which explored areas such as: the impact of services and support provided by the Scottish Government's Shielding Division, thoughts on vaccination, and how pausing shielding in Scotland has impacted different aspects of life.


Direct communications and information is a key area of support that Scottish Government provides to people at higher risk. We wanted to understand what individuals thought about the communications and how helpful they were.

91% of respondents found the direction communications from the Scottish Government either very or somewhat helpful.

The majority of respondents (81%) felt that they were receiving about the right level of communication from the Scottish Government about shielding. However, 15% still felt there was not enough communication. It is unclear what more they would expect to hear about or why it has not been enough, but early insight from in-depth interviews which followed the survey have highlighted people feeling unsupported once shielding was paused.

What communications respondents have received since July 2020

Chart showing which communications from Scottish Government respondents had received since July 2020
Letter(s) from the Chief Medical Officer 95%
A booklet called ‘Balancing the risks of daily activities during coronavirus’ 78%
A Christmas card with information on how to stay safe over the festive break 53%
Can’t remember/don’t know 2%
I have not received any letters or leaflets from the Scottish Government since July 2020 2%
Response count 4092

Percentages do not add up to 100 as respondents could select multiple options

Helpfulness of letters and leaflets

Very helpful 56%
Somewhat helpful 35%
Neither helpful or unhelpful 7%
Somewhat unhelpful 1%
Very unhelpful 1%
Response count 4062

Feedback on volume of communication about shielding

Too much communication 5%
About the right level of communication 81%
Not enough communication 15%
Response count 4137



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