The World Health Organization (WHO) launched Health Alert on WhatsApp, a free app that answers questions from the public about Coronavirus, and which gives prompt, reliable and official information 24 hours a day, worldwide. This will also serve government decision-makers by providing the latest numbers and situation reports.
Users start by clicking WHO Health Alert, then simply text “‘Hi” in a WhatsApp message to get started. The service responds to a series of prompts and will be updated daily with the latest information.
Additionally, users can also visit the WhatsApp Coronavirus Information Hub at whatsapp.com/coronavirus, and click on the WHO link on the homepage to open up a chat with the WHO Health Alert if they have WhatsApp installed.
The WHO Health Alert will provide official information on topics such as how to protect yourself from infection, travel advice, and debunking Coronavirus myths. The service is initially launching in English but will be available in all six United Nations languages within the coming weeks — including English, Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian and Spanish.
“Digital technology gives us an unprecedented opportunity for vital health information to go viral and spread faster than the pandemic, helping us save lives and protect the vulnerable,” Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of WHO, said in a statement. “We are proud to have partners like Facebook and WhatsApp, that are supporting us in reaching billions of people with important health information.”
Earlier this week WhatsApp, in partnership with the World Health Organization, UNICEF, and UNDP, launched the WhatsApp Coronavirus Information Hub, to provide simple, actionable guidance for health workers, educators, community leaders, nonprofits, local governments and local businesses that rely on WhatsApp to communicate. The site also offers general tips and resources for users around the world to reduce the spread of rumors and connect with accurate health information.