The first WHO Infodemic Administration Coaching programme kicks off subsequent week, and individuals will come collectively throughout 8 periods that can happen over the course of the following 4 weeks.The coaching programme obtained over 650 purposes from 83 nations, and this very aggressive choice course of resulted in a cohort of 270 trainees.
The coaching has been co-sponsored by the US Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention, Africa Centres for Illness Management and Prevention and RCCE collective service. Technical experience is being supplied by First Draft, a non-profit that works globally to deal with misinformation.
Organizing the coaching programme has been an advanced logistical train. The quantity and placement of this primary cohort means the periods will likely be repeated twice per day to permit everybody to hitch the periods reside to ask questions and to work together with their fellow learners. In the course of the 34 hours of programming, there will likely be 46 totally different audio system sharing their experience with the individuals.
The coaching programme has been pushed by a recognition of the hurt being attributable to false and deceptive well being info circulating in on-line areas, low high quality information retailers and in peer to see discussions. By the top of the coaching, individuals may have an intensive grounding in infodemic administration. This contains an understanding that public well being professionals have to share correct, participating, sharable content material in addition to utilizing methods to counter misinformation when it begins to trigger hurt to communities.
The course contains sensible coaching on instruments for monitoring rumors, fact-checking and verification, in addition to studying how one can reply successfully and testing interventions to decelerate the unfold of misinformation. There are additionally visitor audio system from UNICEF, Google and Fb and most significantly representatives from nation based mostly Ministries of Well being who will likely be speaking about their present challenges with the infodemic and the teachings they’ve discovered.
On the first welcome occasion, 188 learners interacted over Zoom sharing experiences and hopes for the upcoming weeks. The session included an info ‘disaster’ simulation, the place individuals performed the position of a public well being communications officer in a serious North American metropolis and needed to make selections based mostly on a fictional public well being incident, the place rumors have been swirling throughout social media. Would they maintain a press convention? Or debunk rumors instantly on the totally different social media platforms? Or would they look forward to extra info? The simulation was designed to spotlight the totally different challenges concerned in infodemic administration at this time, and to preview a number of the key components of the coaching programme.
As one of many individuals posted through the simulation: “This looks like a ‘select your personal journey sport.” The coaching has been designed to be interactive, participating and sensible. By the top of the coaching, individuals who will efficiently cross the evaluation will be a part of the WHO roster of infodemic managers to be deployed to nations, the place they are going to be thrust into real-life conditions that can really feel removed from an journey sport.
The coaching crew are very excited to work with these skilled professionals from the fields of epidemiology, threat communication, well being service supply/well being care employees, digital well being, coverage making, and others who’re responding to the present COVID-19 and overlapping infodemics at nation stage.