A U.S. study concluded that there is a certain relationship between the selected news sources and knowledge of the coronavirus: people reporting on government websites responded better, while those who chose Facebook scored poorer. The results reflect the importance of news sources in designing public health interventions.
The person considering Facebook with TV According to a study published in the latest issue of the journal, it is poorly understood as a reliable means of learning about the coronavirus. Current medical research and opinions, In which he assessed how much the population knew at the beginning of the pandemic.
Works under investigation 5,948 adults Between Pennsylvania (USA) March 25-31, 2020. Therefore, people who find that they have more confidence in social networks and TV news are less likely to understand the coronavirus correctly. In fact, adults who use Facebook as a source of additional information are unlikely to answer questions about COVID-19 correctly.
False information and ignorance about covid-19 and its transmission may be the cause of the pandemic
Robert LennonAssociate Professor of Family and Community Medicine at American University, one of the authors of the study, affirmed that the rise of social networks “has changed the way the world informs themselves. His work affirmed that 66% of Americans rely on social media for news.”
Lennon said: “This is worrying because misinformation and ignorance about covid-19 and its transmission may be the cause of the pandemic.” According to the publication of this article, as of the date of this article, COVID-19 worldwide The death toll of 19 was 2.9 million. Johns Hopkins University Number.
Investigations at the beginning of the pandemic
According to the authors of the study, the coronavirus outbreak in March 2020 is already worrying, and Penn State University researchers quickly conducted an investigation.
Through this work, they tried to explore Knowledge, opinions and sources of information The public prefers to stay up to date with the coronavirus. This rate of development allowed WHO to declare COVID-19 a pandemic within hours of learning to fund its research.
The survey was quickly mailed to 5,948 Pennsylvania adults who will provide insights into the use of public information in the process of public participation. National emergency. Therefore, the interviewees answered questions about news sources and their most trusted sources. After that, they got 15 statements about covid-19, and they had to say whether they were right or wrong, and their level of confidence in the answer.
These problems solve many problems, such as transmission, severity, or treatment. They raised easy, medium and difficult questions in these areas. In addition, as media reports progress, formulating survey questions has become increasingly difficult. The researcher said: “A problem that is almost impossible to solve on Monday is so easy to use on Thursday.”
Trust by source
The results show that the most reliable source of information is U.S. government website (42.8%), followed by TV (27.2%) and Health System Communications (9,3%).
The study concluded that there is a clear relationship between the selected information source and knowledge of the coronavirus. For example, participants who rely more on government websites are more likely to answer correctly, while participants who prefer TV score worse. Among adults who chose Facebook as the most reliable source or other source of information, these results dropped sharply.
These data show the importance of considering news sources when designing Public health intervention. Key messages (such as “stay at home”, “wash hands”, “wear a mask” or “keep social distancing”) are only valid if they are understood.
Lennon recalled, ” Effective communication This is a key element in successfully managing the response to a pandemic.” To this end, the researchers added: “The first step in following the recommendations is to understand the recommendations. “
He concluded: “It is vital that health promotion personnel consider how the public obtains information and monitors these places to correct misinformation.”
Surav Man Sakya Wait. “The impact of COVID-19-related changes in media consumption on public knowledge: Results of a cross-sectional survey of adults in Pennsylvania” (2021). Current medical research and opinions, DOI: 10.1080 / 03007995.2021.1901679