Washington, D.C., June 15, 2020 (PAHO) — The Pan American Health Organization has extended its alliance with Twitter to provide factual, reliable information on the COVID-19 pandemic in the Americas. An agreement recently signed with the site will enable it to continue training public health social media managers and provide advertising credits to PAHO for evidence-based information dissemination on COVID-19. This is the first agreement PAHO has formalized with a social media company.
Twitter said in a statement, “As the global community faces the COVID-19 pandemic, we want to share the work we do to help people find reliable information in real time, connect with others, promote productive interactions, raise the voices of authorities and experts, and continue to protect the health of the conversation.”
It's so important for people to have access to information on prevention measures to be able to protect themselves and save lives. Information must be factual, timely, and science-based, and is the best way to counter misinformation."
PAHO Deputy Director Mary Lou Valdez.
"We are grateful to Twitter for their strong support to PAHO and the countries of the Region of the Americas to ensure that essential messages and information reach people when they need it most,” she added.
Twitter said it activated a search notification throughout Latin America on January 30 in collaboration with PAHO. “This notice appears when people search Twitter for words related to COVID-19, and highlights the authorities' resources with more information.”
In collaboration with health ministries, these notifications were enabled in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, El Salvador, Mexico, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, and Uruguay. In the rest of the region, these notices continue to direct people to PAHO / WHO tools, documents, and initiatives.
As part of the collaborative efforts with PAHO/WHO, representatives and heads of communication from different countries were trained in best practices to share information during a crisis, Twitter’s statement said. “For this reason, we continue supporting PAHO/WHO, Ministries of Health, and civil society organizations with their communication strategies on Twitter and guiding them with best practices in the use of tools, for example, for live broadcasts, or Q+A sessions.”
In Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia and Mexico, Twitter has a hub dedicated exclusively to COVID-19 content from official health and government sources.