Amy Mitchell & J. Baxter Oliphant | Pew Research Center | March 18, 2020
The COVID-19 pandemic has caught Americans’ rapt attention. Roughly half of U.S. adults (51%) are following news about it very closely, with another 38% following it fairly closely, according to a new Pew Research Center Election News Pathways survey conducted from March 10-16, 2020. During this period, the number of confirmed cases in the United States increased from about 650 to over 3,000, the World Health Organization declared the COVID-19 outbreak a pandemic, President Donald Trump announced a ban on travel to the U.S. from European countries and many universities announced closures or remote classes.
Americans give the news media fairly high marks for their coverage of COVID-19, though most think their reporting has at least somewhat exaggerated the risks.