Too much information causes an “infodemic”

Many people want to understand the newest research on medicines that can prevent severe infection from COVID-19. However, it can be very difficult to know what is true and what is false information. Additionally, the science behind medical research changes with time. Sometimes, the large amount of available information can be overwhelming, also known as an “infodemic.” For patients, it is important to have access to accurate and easy-to-understand information about new therapies and COVID-19. For example, during the early days of the pandemic, there were lots of discussions and questions about using the drug, hydroxychloroquine, as a preventative treatment for COVID-19.

A free online guide with the latest research

The World Health Organization (WHO) created a free resource summarizing the latest research on COVID-19 treatments. It is updated regularly, similar to our own online resource at The first version of this guide focuses on the evidence for hydroxychloroquine. The WHO expert panel strongly advises against use of hydroxychloroquine to prevent COVID-19. Future updates will discuss other drugs being investigated for their role in preventing COVID-19. The researchers who create this online resource include experts, doctors, patients, and a specialist in ethics. The panel also includes four patients who have had COVID-19. Their perspectives were crucial in considering the values and preferences associated with hydroxychloroquine.


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