(The Hill) — Americans have ranked opioids and obesity as the top threats to public health while ranking COVID-19 toward the bottom of the list, according to a new poll.
The new Axios-Ipsos poll found that 26% of Americans said opioids and fentanyl are the top public health threat, closely followed by 23% who said obesity is. Twenty percent listed access to firearms as the number one threat and 11% listed cancer.
Just 2% of Americans said COVID-19 was the top threat. This comes as COVID-19 cases have increased this summer, with some areas seeing hospitalizations triple due to the cases.
Only about a third of Americans reported social distancing or wearing a mask at least sometimes, the poll noted.
The results also show that views on the top public health threats were largely divided along party lines. Republicans were more likely to report opioids and obesity as their number one concern, while Democrats were more concerned about gun deaths.
Level of education also appeared to be an indicator of whether opioids or obesity was their top concern. The poll said those with a high-school level degree or lower are more concerned with opioids than obesity in a 3-to-1 margin. Those with a college degree were more worried about obesity.
The poll also found that three-quarters or more respondents reported that their health is “good,” but only about three in 10 or less said their diet, physical health or personal finances are “very good.”
The poll was conducted Aug. 11-14 among 1,162 adults and has a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 3 percentage points at the 95% confidence level.