Twitter recently decided to stop enforcing its policy against COVID-19 misinformation, a move that ACHI President and CEO Dr. Joe Thompson tells reporters is irresponsible and potentially dangerous.
“The No. 1 law of medicine is ‘Cause no harm,’ and free speech about health and health care, where you allow snake oil salesmen to sell whatever they want to on a platform like Twitter, is not only irresponsible, it’s potentially harmful for individuals,” he tells television station KNWA/Fox 24.
Thompson says he urges against using Twitter as a source of health or healthcare information.
“There are no protections in place, and the information you get is potentially going to be false,” he tells television station KATV.
Twitter’s abdication of responsibility is especially concerning in Arkansas, which has experienced a greater impact from COVID-19 than most states because of its low vaccination rates and the rampant spread of misinformation, according to Thompson.
Thompson says that to guard against misinformation, when you see something presented as new information related to health or health care, before sharing it with others you should check to see whether it is from a credible source, where the evidence is, and what other sources are saying about it.
Visit our COVID-19 in Arkansas page for more information in the newly added section, ‘Combating COVID-19 Misinformation.”
UPDATE: Thompson also discussed Twitter’s decision with radio station KUAF.