Fighting an epidemic of misinformation The importance of science and learning in dealing with coronavirus
This article states that a key part of the problem of misinformation is that the public is effectively presented with various sources of information, through different digital media platforms, sometimes from anonymous sources and other times from figures claiming to have some degree of authority or credibility. It can be difficult to discern fact from fiction. And most worryingly this happens with alarming regularity, and spurious claims can gain incredible traction with huge swathes of the public in matter of days, even hours.
The upshot is that evidence-based science is more important than ever. In the absence of a vaccine or validated antiviral treatments, information and public health measures are the only tools we have at our disposal to stop transmission of the virus, prevent deaths and keep our health systems running.Online surveys revealed that information overload and conflicting guidance are among the biggest concerns for the public during the current coronavirus outbreak.
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July 21, 2020