By Nathalie Voit
One in three U.S. adults believe the coronavirus pandemic is over, new survey results from Gallup released on May 23 found. A significant majority (58%) also say their lives have at least “somewhat” returned to normal.
The findings are from an April 25 to May 2 update to Gallup’s COVID-19 tracking poll, which began asking the American public whether they thought the pandemic was over last June when the COVID-19 vaccination campaign was in full swing and cases were at their lowest point. At the time, the Delta wave of the virus had not swept through the country, and 29% of U.S. adults said the pandemic had ended.
Compared to last summer’s period of high optimism, 34% of U.S. adults today say the pandemic is over. Gallup said May’s reading was the highest since the survey’s inception.
Still, two in three U.S. adults (66%) do not believe the public health crisis has run its course, with responses diverging sharply along partisan lines. While 67% of Republicans say the pandemic is over in the U.S., just 10% of Democrats say the same.
Americans’ views of the state of the pandemic also diverge along age lines, with middle-aged Americans more likely than younger and older adults (41% vs. 30% for both) to say the pandemic has ended.
Another three in four U.S. adults say COVID-19-related disruptions will persist through the end of 2022 (40%) or longer (34%), with half of those surveyed saying their lives will never return to pre-pandemic normalcy.
Twenty-nine percent of those surveyed expect their normal lives to resume, with most forecasting a complete return to normalcy sometime in 2023.
The online study results found that Americans are more likely now than at any point since last summer to say the pandemic is over. However, a substantial majority do not believe they are totally in the clear yet.