Earlier this week, the Biden administration announced its plans to end the COVID-19 public health emergency in May. Far from just a symbolic gesture, the decision will effectively end free testing, vaccination, and treatment for uninsured Americans, along with most Medicare and Medicaid coverage of pandemic-related care. It came just before House Republicans passed the Pandemic Is Over Act, which would end the emergency declaration immediately if it becomes law.
CivicScience wanted to gauge American sentiment for the move, as the country approaches three years since the COVID-19 pandemic was declared as such. Two-thirds of U.S. adults approve of the decision to end the public health emergency in May, with just 20% disapproving.
Although roughly the same percentage of registered Democrats (68%) and Republicans (71%) approve overall of the proposal, it’s the rare Biden administration policy for which Republicans are nearly twice as likely as Democrats to issue ‘strong’ approval.
The latest data reflect a majority of Americans who appear eager to move on from the pandemic, at least from a procedural standpoint. And compared to CivicScience’s data from one year ago, U.S. adults are significantly less likely to claim COVID-19 plays a ‘major role in my day-to-day life’ (7%, down from 18% last February). A plurality of adults still claim they’re ‘very conscious of it, but try not to let it affect my day-to-day-life,’ but more than half of Americans don’t really think about COVID-19 anymore, or never did – a significant uptick from last year.
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