Academic institutions in the United States that focus on infectious diseases and public health, such as Johns Hopkins University and the University of Washington, also have coordinated information about COVID-19 and the latest case tallies.
The National Cancer Institute (NCI) is a centralized authority on cancer. It has current information for patients and providers about COVID-19 and its impact on cancer care.
2. Check that the information is recently published.
Timestamps and datelines are important in a rapidly changing situation. Information from last week may not be factual or relevant today.
3. Trust local authorities to have the most accurate coronavirus information for your community.
Your local city or county health department, as well as local hospitals, will have the most current information about available testing sites. Local public safety officials will have the best information about restricted movement and social distancing rules where you live.
4. Carefully consider news that seems designed to elicit an emotional response.
A global pandemic is already a stressful situation. However, news that is intended to make you angry or sad or scared about it is more likely to be biased and untrue. Consider why the information was written and published, and look for links back to coronavirus experts or local authorities for the complete story.
Misinformation — both intentional and unintentional — is everywhere. Do your part to communicate information that is factually accurate, and don’t share information on social media that may be untrue.
5. Be careful to distinguish between news and opinion.
Broadcast news channels and newspapers publish both news and opinion pieces. Often the opinion pieces or panels of experts provide the most shareable or “clickable” content. However, for health information, they tend to be less-than-reliable sources.
Focus on gathering your information from the newscast portion of the programming or reading articles that are from the news section — not the editorial or opinion pieces.
6. Use the same sources your medical librarians use.
Medical librarians use sources that compile evidence to help them find the underlying research and science. UpToDate and DynaMed are two sources that summarize the latest coronavirus research to help doctors make decisions about care. Links to the original authoritative sources of information with published dates are listed next to all recommendations.