Trust in scientists and medical scientists, once seemingly buoyed by their central role in addressing the coronavirus outbreak, is now below pre-pandemic levels.

Overall, 29% of U.S. adults say they have a great deal of confidence in medical scientists to act in the best interests of the public, down from 40% who said this in November 2020. Similarly, the share with a great deal of confidence in scientists to act in the public’s best interests is down by 10 percentage points, from 39% to 29%.

Partisan differences over trust in medical scientists and scientists continue to widen since the coronavirus outbreak. Democrats remain more likely than Republicans to express confidence in both to act in the public’s best interests, but there has been a significant decline among both partisan groups in the past year.

Other prominent groups, including the military, police officers, and public school principals, have also seen their ratings decline.