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Zika virus pandemic—analysis of Facebook as a social media health information platform

Published:November 01, 2016DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ajic.2016.08.022

      Highlights

      • The arrival of Zika virus in America has generated a lot of awareness in social media due to the algorithmic increase in the spread of the disease and its concerning complications.
      • Accurate & credible dissemination of correct information about the arbovirus could help in decreasing the pandemic spread and associated apprehension in the population.
      • Our study examined the effective use of the social media site Facebook as an information source for the Zika virus pandemic.
      • We found that the misleading posts were far more popular than the posts dispersing accurate relevant public health information about the disease.
      The arrival of Zika virus in the United States has generated a lot of activity on social media focusing on the algorithmic increase in the spread of the disease and its concerning complications. Accurate and credible dissemination of correct information about the arbovirus could help in decreasing the pandemic spread and associated apprehension in the population. Our study examined the effective use of the social media site Facebook (Facebook Inc, Menlo Park, CA) as an information source for the Zika virus pandemic. We found that the misleading posts were far more popular than the posts dispersing accurate, relevant public health information about the disease.

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