Coronavirus: fight back with facts

The global spread of Coronavirus has been accompanied by a germinating mass of misinformation and myths.

The virus has travelled rapidly to reach pandemic status. Concern is natural and it is easy to latch on sound bites that find life on the multiple platforms now delivering a torrent of news and information.

Urban myths

From rinsing your nose regularly with saline or spraying your body with alcohol, the urban counter-measures are flowing freely — which makes it ever more important to stick to the journalists’ mantra: FACTS ARE SACRED.

The Medical Journalists’ Association believes the advice from the Chief Medical Officer for England, Public Health England and the World Health Organisation is critical to our health and the accurate reporting of Coronavirus.

The government slogan of ‘Protect Yourself & Others’ also applies to how we report this responsibly. The links below are good sources to anchor writing and broadcasting in solid statistics and information.

Members of the MJA and our colleagues at the Science Media Centre may be able to provide informed comment and content in addition to these trusted sources:

Useful links

Mythbusting:

https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019/advice-for-public/myth-busters

https://patient.info/news-and-features/covid-19-coronavirus-myths-debunked

Tracking cases:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-track-coronavirus-cases

Expert comments about the UK response:

https://www.sciencemediacentre.org/working-with-us/for-journalists/

Help us spread the word

  • HAVE YOU FOUND ANOTHER GOOD SOURCE OF COVID-19 INFORMATION?
  • HAVE YOU RECEIVED ANY IRRESPONSIBLE CORONAVIRUS RELATED PRESS RELEASES?
  • WHAT’S YOUR FAVOURITE BIT OF ADVICE? OR TOP TIP ON HAND-WASHING?

Please add your thoughts and updates via comments at the end of this post

 

By Danny Buckland

 

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