During a United Nations General Assembly event, the World Health Organization and partner organizations called on all countries to put national action plans in place to promote science-based health information and to combat misinformation.
“We call on the media, technology companies, civil society, researchers, and people everywhere to keep the infodemic from spreading,” said Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, director-general of WHO. “Because now more than ever, the truth matters.”
“Just as Covid-19 has spread around the world, so too have rumors, untruths and disinformation. And they can be just as dangerous,” Tedros said.
He outlined how misinformation has led to too many people harming themselves based on falsehoods, self-medicating with toxic chemicals or dangerous medications and an increased stigmatization in institutions and health systems.
Even the most effective vaccine will fail if the public don’t have confidence in it, Tedros warned as he explained why it is so important that the public and policy makers are provided with accurate information.
Read their full statement here.