WHO launches credible Coronavirus info app on WhatsApp
I’ve just joined a new WhatsApp group and I think you may want to join me there: The World Health Organization’s Health Alert app gives you credible and scientific answers to your questions about Coronavirus 24 hours a day.
You can sign-up here.
Information is power
Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of WHO said:
“Digital technology gives us an unprecedented opportunity for vital health information to go viral and spread faster than the pandemic, helping us save lives and protect the vulnerable. We are proud to have partners like Facebook and WhatsApp, that are supporting us in reaching billions of people with important health information.”
The global introduction of the service follows trials in South Africa, where the solution has successfully helped inform the public while also reducing the spread of fake news and poor advice. Available now in English, Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian and Spanish versions should be here soon.
The free to use app promises reliable and official information 24 hours a day, worldwide. This will also serve government decision-makers by providing the latest numbers and situation reports.
It lets you track disease spread, get advice on how to protect yourself, answer questions, challenge myths and get all the latest news on the pandemic.
Start by clicking WHO Health Alert, then simply text the word ‘Hi’ in a WhatsApp message to get started. The service responds to a series of prompts and will be updated daily with the latest information.
You can also visit the WhatsApp Coronavirus Information Hub at whatsapp.com/coronavirus, and click on the WHO link on the homepage to open up a chat with the WHO Health Alert if you have WhatsApp installed.
Why it matters
There’s so much FUD, misinformation and dumb stupidity flying around, much of it from those we rely on to know better, getting informed is becoming almost as important a first line of defence as washing your hands.
If you want to learn even more about what’s happening, the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine has just launched a free online course exploring the emergence of COVID-19.