A Data Snapshot on Omicron variant and individual perception risk – Febuary 2022


The Omicron variant of COVID-19, first identified in November 2021, is more contagious than previous variants.

According to a survey by Abacus Data, this has triggered a wave of anxiety in Canada

‘Perception of susceptibility’ for COVID-19 is one of several perception indicators regularly tracked by the RCCE Collective Service Behavioural Dashboard. The COVID-19 Behaviour Change Framework defines this indicator as the “percentage of individuals who believe they are at risk of contracting COVID-19.”

And this data tends to confirm the above statement as visible on the below graph, which shows the number of new cases per million in blue and the percentage of people who report feeling at risk of catching COVID-19.


In order to assess a possible generalisation of this phenomenon, we plot the change in the number of cases between Nov 2021 and Dec 2021 on the x-axis and the change in the susceptibility perception on the y-axis on the below graph.

This plot displays a statistically significant (p-value << 0.05) correlation, which could confirm that Omicron might have indeed triggered an increased susceptibility perception, at least in some countries as visible on the below dashboard (mouse hover for more details on each country).

How is your country doing?

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Persons interested in exploring country-level data further can use the RCCE COVID-19 Country Dashboard

Data sources

Publication: 20th Febuary 2022