FSD3662 ISSP 2021: Health II: Finnish Data

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  • International Social Survey Programme (ISSP)
  • Melin, Harri (Tampere University. Faculty of Social Sciences)
  • Borg, Sami (Tampere University. Faculty of Management and Business)


COVID-19, Internet, complementary therapies, health, health policy, health services, health status, lifestyle and health, naturopathy, physicians, vaccination, well-being (health)


This survey examined opinions on health policy and health services in Finland as well as the respondents' own state of health. Additionally, the survey charted the handling of epidemics and other current topics of discussion in society.

Questions relating to health and health services surveyed the respondents' satisfaction with life and trust in the Finnish health care system. The respondents were asked how fair or unfair they thought it was that people with better income could buy better healthcare, the extent to which they agreed with statements relating to the health care system, and how willing they would be to pay more taxes to improve the health care in Finland. The respondents were asked about public funding of different health measures, who should get treatment, and whether they thought getting access to health care was easier for some groups over others. Views were probed on the causes of severe health problems, alternative medicine and trust in doctors.

The respondents were asked whether they had used the internet to look for health or medical information, and if yes, which topics they had researched (vaccinations, anxiety, healthy lifestyle). The respondents' opinions on the usefulness and reliability of information found on the internet were surveyed, and their views on the safety of vaccinations were charted. Next, the respondents were asked about (mental and physical) symptoms experienced, treatment received, reasons for forgoing medical treatment, and the probability of receiving the best possible treatment. Satisfaction with the health care system as well as the latest treatment when visiting a doctor and an alternative health care practitioner were investigated. Questions covered smoking and drinking habits, exercise and nutrition, perceived status of health, chronic illnesses and conditions, and height and weight. Other questions investigated what kind of health insurance the respondents had and who they thought should primarily provide health care services for the sick and elderly in Finland (e.g. government, private companies, family).

Finally, the respondents' opinions on issues relating to the COVID-19 pandemic were examined. The respondents were asked whether they thought Finnish authorities should have the right to, for example, shut down businesses or demand that people stay at home at times of severe epidemics, as well as whether their trust in the health care system and the government had increased or decreased based on how the pandemic had been handled in Finland. Questions also surveyed how the respondents' work activity, income and social life had been affected by the pandemic.

Background variables included, among others, the respondent's gender, age, level and length of education, status in employment, occupation, economic activity, marital status, spouse's status of employment and occupation, religious affiliation, political party choice in the previous parliamentary elections, household composition, monthly gross income, monthly gross household income and degree of urbanisation.

Study description in machine readable DDI-C 2.5 format

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