Looking for accurate health information online? 6 tips to find it, from a doctor

2 October, 2021

https://ideas.ted.com/6-tips-for-finding-accurate-health-info-online-hea...

Nice piece to share. Najeeb [*see note from moderator below]

HIFA profile: Najeeb Al-Shorbaji recently retired from the World Health Organization (WHO), where he has worked since 1988 in different capacities. He was most recently Director of the Knowledge, Ethics and Research Department at WHO headquarters, Geneva. Previously he was Coordinator for Knowledge Management and Sharing in EMRO (Eastern Mediterranean Regional Office), Egypt. He is a member of a number of national and international professional societies and associations specialised in information management and health informatics. He has authored over 100 research papers and articles presented in various conferences and published in professional journals. He is a member of the HIFA Steering Group and the HIFA Working Group on Multilingualism.

http://www.hifa.org/support/members/najeeb

http://www.hifa.org/projects/multilingualism

Email: shorbajin AT gmail.com

[*Note from HIFA moderator (Neil PW): Thanks Najeeb. For the benefit of those who may not have immediate web access, here are the six tips:

'As we all know, the internet is chock full of nonsense, so here, Dr. Jen tells you how to sort out the junk science from the truth...

Tip #1: Look for bias...

Tip #2: Google better...

Tip #3: Find out if your source is a qualified medical expert...

Tip #4: Personal testimonials are not scientifically valid...

Tip #5: Check to see if products and manufacturers have been flagged by the authorities...

Tip #6: Make a plan and start right...'

These tips would make a great discussion starter here on HIFA. I'll be interested to hear HIFA members' views on the above. Do you agree these should be the 'top 6 tips'? I am unsure about #3, accentuated again in the title 'from a doctor'. Unfortunately, a few doctors have done a great deal of harm by spreading misinformation. What is more useful is not whether the source is a 'doctor', but whether the organisation that curates the website is reliable and authoritative. For example, it is better to point people to a reliable source such as the WHO website than to rely on the stated credentials of an individual.]