BMJ news: 'Taking down online scientific misinformation isn't necessary, as most people don't believe it, says Royal Society' (10)

28 January, 2022

Dear All,

Very interesting thread and as per previous posts I've been interested in 'information' as a concept for many years.

The points raised

1. by Dr Okan's tweet ::-

“When we think of #healthliteracy we should think not only of #personalhealthliteracy but also: signposting, standards, regulation, surveillance. policy, #organizationalhealthliteracy and #personalhealthliteracy. A 'comprehensive approach' is needed.”

2. Neil's emphasis upon "Personal health literacy" and Chris's points "you cannot tackle health literacy in society without helping individuals to absorb health information ... social and political forces .... better public understanding of science" -

- are *precisely* why I continue to study and advocate for a generic conceptual framework that is not only relevant within healthcare but generally.

The tweets initiating this dialogue highlight the need for comprehensivity in approach (with its informational consequences!).

The scope and scale from INDIVIDUAL to DYAD*, group, community, population(s).

As COVID has also emphasized, we must not underestimate the influence of the dyad - close relationships in literacy as realised and enacted in perception, thoughts, belief, emotions, behaviour.

Where Neil refers to "These wider facets are nicely captured in Dr Okan’s tweet" - might I please suggest that these facets have been presented using Hodges' model and related to personal and global (planetary) health for several decades - but then I am just a nurse ensnared by a memetic model of care?

I continue to be encouraged by the way researchers across disciplines 'find' Hodges' model and see its situational value and ability to help critique and assure values.

In terms of complexity (complication) 'information' in the health context is (co-) dependent upon building blocks that must start with basic education - schooling.

Without this (scope and remit aside) HIFA is banging its head against the wall and health services and health systems will always be seeking sustainability.

Perhaps 'health literacy' suffers from there being no overarching theory of health communication?

Jones, P. (1996) An overarching theory of health communication? Health Informatics Journal,2,1,28-34.

Were theoretical physics is 'built' on mathematics - logic, set theory, topology, manifolds ... geometry - we (in social sciences) have no established / recognised 'logic'(?).

Such a 'logic' is a prerequisite if we are serious about "The information IN health information" and this should (must) incorporate consideration of ignorance and its effects.


I am currently revising a paper* on "Technology, Society, Covid-19 and Hodges' model" which considers misinformation - disinformation, social media and ignorance.

Joseph's thoughts also point to the issue of the informational content of sources that AI artificial intelligence systems interrogate and thereby 'integrate'?

AI systems must be tested therefore to the extent they are 'health literate' and can demonstrate the same - explainability?

Some resources towards this revision:

Defining “Disinformation” – Version 1.1 – MediaWell (

RESIST 2 Counter Disinformation Toolkit - GCS (

Wardle, Claire, and Hossein Derakhshan. 2017. “Information Disorder: Toward an Interdisciplinary Framework for Research and Policy Making.” 162317GBR. Council of Europe.


Jones, P. (1996) Humans, Information, and Science, Journal of Advanced Nursing, 24(3),591-598.


Jones, P. (2004) Viewpoint: Can informatics and holistic multidisciplinary care be harmonised? British Journal of Healthcare Computing & Information Management, 21, 6, 17-18.

Jones P. (2014) Using a conceptual framework to explore the dimensions of recovery and their relationship to service user choice and self-determination. International Journal of Person Centered Medicine. Vol 3, No 4, (2013) pp.305-311.

'public understand'

Next month I will write a blog post highlighting the tweets and thread.

Kind regards and best to all,

Peter Jones

Community Mental Health Nurse, Tutor & Researcher

Early Intervention Team Psychoses, Salford, UK

Blogging at "Welcome to the QUAD"

*trying to take out the kitchen sink! :-)

HIFA profile: Peter Jones is a Community Mental Health Nurse with the NHS in NW England and a a part-time tutor at Bolton University. Peter champions a conceptual framework - Hodges' model - that can be used to facilitate personal and group reflection and holistic / integrated care. A bibliography is provided at the blog 'Welcome to the QUAD' ( h2cmuk AT