More than three-quarters of Quebecers (77%) believe that their satisfaction with their social life has decreased since the start of the pandemic, can we read in a press release announcing the release of part of the results of the Quebec Population Health Survey (EQSP) carried out in 2020-2021.
While nearly one in five Quebecers (18%) often felt isolated during this period, this feeling of loneliness is more present among women, young people under 35, students, people living alone or in single-parent families, as well as those who perceive themselves as poor, according to the results of theISQ.
However, it is not possible to compare these figures with those which prevailed before the pandemic, since this is the first time that theEQSP examines isolation, according to Hélène Camirand, research professional in health surveys at theISQ.
The survey does not mention possible inequalities based on Aboriginal status or membership in an ethnocultural minority.
More than one in four Quebecers (26%) had difficulty meeting their financial obligations or meeting their basic needs. A proportion that climbs to nearly one in two (49%) among those who have lost their jobs because of the pandemic.
And there are many of these. According to figures from theISQ, 27% of Quebecers, including 40% of young people aged 15 to 24, have lost their jobs or closed their businesses temporarily or permanently at one time or another during the pandemic.
Reported alcohol, tobacco and cannabis use has increased for some and decreased for others.
Among all Quebecers aged 15 and over, 5% indicate that they have increased their frequency of cigarette consumption since the start of the pandemic. This proportion is 14% for alcohol consumption and 4.4% for cannabis consumption., we say.
However, 11% of people who perceive themselves as poor smoked cigarettes more. Conversely, 14% of Quebecers say they have reduced their alcohol consumption, 4% say they have reduced their consumption of cigarettes, and 3% say they have reduced their consumption of cannabis.
Again, theISQ is not in a position to compare this situation with the variations in consumption reported before the pandemic, indicates Ms. Camirand.
Among the 45,000 respondents to this survey, 7,000 people answered questions specifically about the COVID-19 pandemic between November 2020 and April 2021, indicates theISQ.
The full results of theEQSP will be released in May 2023.