Communicating Risks, Prevention Of Zika Poses Challenges For Public Health Authorities
International Business Times: Zika Virus In The U.S.: How The Outbreak Became A Public Relations Mess
“…[Zika] can cause devastating birth defects in babies, yet the majority of adults suffer no symptoms if they are infected. Communicating those risks accurately to a public informed by a fear-mongering media is a challenging, delicate endeavor. … Social media also reinforce fears resulting from this kind of coverage, which can then inspire measures, proportionate or not, to protect the public. ‘People look to certain people within their social network to validate information,’ said Josh Michaud, an associate director with the global health policy team at the Kaiser Family Foundation … If that information turns out to be wrong, ‘then you have a real recipe for disaster,’ he added…” (Whitman, 6/9).