We’re all experiencing this pandemic both together and in isolation. We checked in one last time in 2020 and asked how you all were doing. Some of the questions were new, and some were identical to questions we asked last spring so we could compare responses. Here are the results of that survey.

Nine Months In and the Community is Still Rightfully Concerned

The types of negative emotions “felt in the last week” are starting to drop while the positive ones are holding steady. The main takeaway is that the Health Stories Project community is still overloaded with concern and stress.

Even with vaccines rolling out, the concern may in part be due to your views on the federal government’s handling of the pandemic.

Local and state governments’ responses were viewed much better.

The Good and the Bad of Pandemic Guidelines

Since March of last year, we’ve been given guidelines and updated guidelines. We have federal, state, and local guidelines. We continually get reminders of the guidelines. Then there are guidelines by ethnicity, age, medical condition, guidelines based on where you work – you name it. While they can at times be confusing, there’s relatively strong agreement in our community that they need to be followed.

As a reminder, the CDC maintains a website devoted to all things COVID-19.

76% of respondents stated it was very important for their own well-being to adhere to the CDC guidelines to avoid contracting COVID-19.

Some of you have found silver linings in all of this change.

Hope for the Future

In all honesty – the community got it wrong last May. In the spring of 2020, when the coronavirus had only been in the U.S. for a few months, we asked how long you thought this would last. Many of you thought your daily lives would already be returning to normal by now. Well, no need to point out the obvious.

Possibly due to the continued disruption to daily life and that only a small number of vaccines have been administered, the community is now much more pessimistic on near-term relief.

The percent of respondents who said the pandemic would disrupt daily life for longer than a few months has jumped from 37% to 64%.

And the percent of unsure respondents has also risen from 14% to 24%. There is a lot of uncertainty.

Your Thoughts on Vaccines

Some of this shift in thinking may be related to your views on the Federal government, the FDA, and vaccine development. As you will see below, the community is split as far as confidence in the vaccine approval process.

How much confidence do you have in the FDA’s evaluation and review process for approving vaccines for COVID-19?

  • Extremely – 15%
  • Very – 24%
  • Somewhat – 38%
  • Not Very – 14%
  • Not at All – 9%

When asked who should receive the vaccine first, you ranked those on the frontlines of fighting COVID-19 highest and government officials lowest. Health Stories Project is a community of people, many with medical conditions shown to have a higher risk of serious illness, you ranked your own priority in the middle of the pack. 

Many in our community were split as far as when they would be willing to take a vaccine. A fairly large percent of respondents want to wait to take the vaccine.

When would you feel comfortable taking a potential coronavirus vaccine?

  • Immediately – 35%
  • 1-3 months – 18%
  • 4-6 months – 11%
  • 7-12 months – 11%
  • More than 12 months after FDA approval  – 25%

To check in with your state’s vaccine efforts, we again have a link to the CDC where you can enter your state to get directed to the right page.


As tough as things are (and for some, already were before COVID-19 showed up) we asked about some of the things that you might be grateful for and if there is someone in your life that you see as a hero.

On this post, we’re reporting back your answers for, “What are you grateful for?” 

We sorted responses to this question into over 40 categories, but you can see how central life’s basic items rang through the most – Family, Friends, Health, and Being Alive. Many of you said it as plainly as, “a roof over my head, a bed to sleep in, and food to eat.” And a few said oxygen and gravity. We agree, but they weren’t at the top of the list.

Lastly, we asked you if taking the survey and being asked about your challenges along with some of the more positive aspects from this year of the pandemic has helped remind you of the things and people you are grateful for, and it did. We don’t know where you are this day, this week, this month as you read this post, but we wish the best for you in 2021.

75% said answering the survey questions reminded them of things and people they are grateful for.

Our next survey results post will report your answers for who you see as your heroes through all of this. If you’re not yet a member of Health Stories Project, join now.