Pandemic Response: From Containment to Mitigation

Communication and community engagement

Risk communication and community engagement are critical to containment efforts. These must begin early to be meaningful. Working with community leaders/ influencers is vital, especially in traditional societies where cultural practices need to be modified/ discarded temporarily to decrease disease transmission. The Ebola outbreak in 2014 illustrated this- traditional burial practices were considered high risk, but there was considerable resistance to alter them until a compromise approach was identified by working with local leaders.

Similarly, where conflicting messaging occurs, trust is eroded. This happened with the World Health Organization in the current COVID-19 pandemic. The same was observed in the USA, where Mr. Trump and Dr. Fauci often made conflicting statements.

Fake news and messaging must be countered using a variety of approaches, not just presenting facts. Data transparency and sharing are important. However, many countries/states have chosen to restrict or even deny access to data about testing, cases, deaths, etc. These actions only serve to undermine public confidence, and create room for speculation.

2 thoughts on “Pandemic Response: From Containment to Mitigation

  1. Pingback: Balancing Home and Prayer – Immanuel Verbondskind – עמנואל קאָווענאַנט קינד

  2. Pingback: Non-Pharmacological Interventions for Pandemic Mitigation: What you should know (Part 1) | communitymedicine4all

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