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‘There is no vaccine for the infodemic’

Published on Fri 08 Apr 2022 at 06:08

Medical and scientific community need to champion the cause of health fact-checking to combat the virus of misinformation.

By Jakir Hossain Bhuiyan Masud

COVID-19 pandemic came with a flow of Covid misinformation, which compromises health decisions. While not all of the misinformation is shared with malicious intent, it undermines the importance of public reports based on research in global countries.

Since there is no vaccine for the infodemic, how can we combat the virus of misinformation? Combating the spread of COVID-19 misinformation or tackling false health information needs to happen at all levels with medical experts, multidisciplinary professionals as well as individuals on their personal level all working together.

This needs to be done in a way that is positive and not combative in order to be successful. The reason people gobble up false information so easily over facts is because medical organisations are not telling a better story. We need to give a better story in the right direction and with the right information. It should be more comprehensive, useful and focused on accurate and positive messages. 

Most people just want to know when the pandemic will end and want a roadmap to know how to make decisions in the meantime. While the eventual solution may not yet be known, clear and positive public health messaging will continue to be essential.

Watch the YouTube video here

(The author is a First Check member and the Chairman of the Public Health Informatics Foundation (PHIF) in Dhaka, Bangladesh)