Iberoamerican Journal of Medicine
Iberoamerican Journal of Medicine
Original article

Association Between Face Masks Use and Occupation in Cameroon: Perceived Susceptibility to COVID-19 and Physician’s Roles

Armel Fosso Setubi, Mersha Wubie, Alain Pitti Djida, Xavier Emmanuel Fosoumo, Basile Tchiotchoua Nousse, Xavier Gabriel Fopokam, Annie-Flore Kwangwa Tchougene

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Introduction: Face masks use among Cameroonians is a new behavior. Many citizens have adopted face masks as a step to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Individuals might use face masks because of their profession, risk perception, and social status. This study aims at evaluating the relation between occupation and face masks use in COVID-19 setting in Cameroon. Our study hypothesizes that face masks use is not associated with occupation in Cameroon.
Methods: A survey was conducted from May 13 to June 3, 2020, among Cameroonians ranging from ages 15 to 66+. Participants answered questions regarding face mask use, occupation, perceived susceptibility to COVID-19, and physicians' guidance. A binary logistic regression analysis was used to examine the association between face masks use and occupation.
Results: A total of 1,525 persons responded to the survey among 837 males and 688 females. After adjustment, face masks use was not associated with the occupation. Guidance provided by physicians were positively associated with face masks use (OR=2.06, 95%CI:1.48-2.85). Face masks use was also associated with reported answers on whether: face masks protect against COVID-19 (OR=10.48, 95%CI: 7.20-15.25), ability to easily access physician’s guidance about COVID-19 on social media (OR=2.70, 95%CI: 1.94-3.75), and the belief that Africans are naturally resistant to COVID-19 (OR=1.73, 95% CI: 1.13-2.65).
Conclusions: Our study provides evidence that face masks use in COVID-19 setting in Cameroon is not associated with occupation. However, physicians’ role has an impact on people’s behavior. The association between face masks use and the belief that Africans are naturally resistant to COVID-19 points to low perceived susceptibility that needs to be addressed by health professionals and competent civil authorities.


Face masks; Coronavirus; Cameroon; COVID-19; Occupation; Behavior; Health professionals


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