Novel coronavirus (97) Over-information and contradictory information (5)

6 March, 2020

Hello All,

It is absolutely important not to overload the system, any system, with too much information because apart from other risks, there is the risk of putting people off and their missing the intended message. That much is clear.

With the on-going and escalating COVID19 epidemic, the airwaves and media are of necessity inundate with information because the situation has not peaked and therefore the situation is changing as rapidly as more countries are dragged into the cohort of affected countries. So, it appears as if there is too much information whereas infact it is the rapidly changing status of the epidemic that accounts for most of the increase in information - over 60 countries as at yesterday whereas about a week ago it was less than half that number.

The real problem, which I think we should not allow the debate about too much information to overshadow, is the increase of misinformation, fake news, etc. Every attention and effort should be directed at culling and eliminating misinformation wherever and however it emerges. And as quickly as possible, even at the risk of too much information, so long as the information is FACTUAL and verifiable..

Joseph Ana.

HIFA profile: Joseph Ana is the Lead Consultant and Trainer at the Africa Centre for Clinical Governance Research and Patient Safety in Calabar, Nigeria. In 2015 he won the NMA Award of Excellence for establishing 12-Pillar Clinical Governance, Quality and Safety initiative in Nigeria. He has been the pioneer Chairman of the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) National Committee on Clinical Governance and Research since 2012. He is also Chairman of the Quality & Performance subcommittee of the Technical Working Group for the implementation of the Nigeria Health Act. He is a pioneer Trustee-Director of the NMF (Nigerian Medical Forum) which took the BMJ to West Africa in 1995. He is particularly interested in strengthening health systems for quality and safety in LMICs. He has written Five books on the 12-Pillar Clinical Governance for LMICs, including a TOOLS for Implementation. He established the Department of Clinical Governance, Servicom & e-health in the Cross River State Ministry of Health, Nigeria in 2007. Website: Joseph is a member of the HIFA Steering Group and the HIFA working group on Community Health Workers.

Email: jneana AT