Novel coronavirus (83) Over-information and contradictory information

3 March, 2020

Hi Neil & colleagues,

I just wondered if, when discussing information needs and misinformation, we should broaden the discussion to consider over-information and contradictory information, especially in relation to the general public.

For instance, from what I've noticed, there are a number of sources from where members of the public here in the UK seems to be getting information about the disease outbreak - listing a few below just as an illustration. It's not an exhaustive list and of course not all of these are viewed as reliable information sources.

- mass media (press & broadcast; local, national & international)

- the internet

- social media

- educational institution guidance

- workplace guidance (for health professionals as well as for work that is unrelated to health)

- travel agent/airline guidance

- community groups

- colleagues, friends, family

It would be interesting to hear about the views of other HIFA members.

Best wishes


HIFA profile: Julie N Reza is a UK-based specialist in communications for biosciences, global health & international development ( She predominantly works with NGOs and not-for-profit organisations. Previously she was the senior science editor at TDR, based at the World Health Organization (WHO) in Geneva; prior to this she worked at the Wellcome Trust, UK, leading educational projects on international health topics including trypanosomiasis and trachoma. She has a PhD in immunology and a specialist degree in science communication. She also has several years research and postgraduate teaching experience. She is a member of the HIFA Steering Group and HIFA Social Media Working Group.

Email: naimareza AT