When People See Wearing a Mask as Part of Everyone’s Responsibility, They Are More Likely to Do So

A new KFF Health Tracking Poll finds that the use of protective face masks varies depending on whether people view it as a personal choice or collective responsibility. Among those who say that wearing a mask is part of everyone’s responsibility, 85% say that they wear a mask every time they leave their house and might be in contact with other people, and less than 1% say they never wear a mask. Among those who say that wearing a mask is a personal choice, just 37% report wearing a mask every time they leave the house and 14% say they never wear a mask.

The results highlight that adherence to public health guidance is likely affected by the public framing of the issue. The Trump Administration has promoted mask wearing as a personal choice and has opposed the idea of a nationwide mask mandate. President-elect Joe Biden has promised that he will urge all Americans to wear masks for the first 100 days of his presidency and has framed the issue as part of people’s “patriotic duty.”


KFF Health Tracking Poll – December 2020: COVID-19 and Biden’s Health Care Agenda

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