We hardly need a poll to tell us what we already knew: it’s been one tough year. A February 2021 Women In Optometry Pop-up Poll asked respondents to gauge the impact of the pandemic one year after it started. With some rare exceptions—where respondents say that creativity in the workplace and newfound discoveries about themselves are silver linings—generally respondents said that the impact has been a net negative on their work environment, their mental health and in their communities.
“PEOPLE ARE JUST REALLY CRANKY”
That was the write-in response from one respondent who felt like COVID-19 has hurt people’s patience.
Another write-in responder noted some pulling together of the community. “The silver lining of COVID-19 is how our neighborhood has become a neighborhood. We’ve gotten to know neighbors who have become good friends, all the dogs on our block, and lots of kids riding bikes. My ASD son has friends he bikes with, and many of us sit out in the evenings in our driveways. This past year has been challenging, but there are blessings, too.”
The pandemic’s death toll has cast a dark shadow over many. More than 72 percent of the respondents says that they know of people in the community who have died from COVID-19, and 35 percent said they know of a person or people close them to who have died.
Larger percentages have been affected directly or indirectly because of the virus.
- People I know well outside of work have: 78 percent
- Co-workers/members of my team have been sick: 64 percent
- Members of my family have been sick with COVID-19: 47 percent
- I have been sick with COVID-19: 12 percent
Just less than four percent of the respondent said they did not anyone who has become ill with the virus.
Seventy-five percent of the respondents to this poll identified themselves as women ODs, and 15 percent said they were female, but not an OD. Ten percent identified themselves as male ODs.