Leveraging infodemiologists to counteract online misinformation: Experience with COVID-19 vaccines

February 16, 2022

In the new information environment represented by the internet and social media platforms, information of public health importance is transmitted rapidly by decentralized, interpersonal networks rather than through traditional sources like public health officials or professional journalists, thus requiring a new approach to counteracting misinformation. The authors have previously advanced the idea that infodemiology, when combined with effective surveillance and diagnostics, can be an effective method for rapidly addressing online misinformation about science and health. Based on the authors’ experience with an infodemiology program aimed at misinformation about COVID-19 vaccinations, the authors can now offer general recommendations for more widespread training and deployment of infodemiologists who can rapidly respond in situations of high scientific uncertainty.