WhatsApp has become a platform for false information related to the new coronavirus, which causes COVID-19 disease and outbreaks around the world,media outlet Slash Gear reported. The World Health Organization fights fake news by launching its own chatbot, called WHO Health Alert, to disseminate accurate and timely information. Chatbots will provide direct information about the latest casecounts.
WHO Health Alert chatbots work the same way as other chatbots. Users can start a conversation by saying “hello”, which triggers the chatbot to send back messages that contain other conversation options, such as “Gossip Terminator,” “Travel Advice,” “News and Statements,” “Protect yourself, and Latest Numbers.”
Users can respond using numbers or emojis associated with each category to get relevant information, such as the number of current lying cases and news related to the pandemic. Of course, the chatbot service is free to use and is available 24/7 on WhatsApp.
WHO chatbots are also available globally, but to access it, users must add the following number (and send them an introductory “Hi” or “Hello” message) to their phone contact: s41 79 893 1892. According to the World Health Organization, the service will be updated daily and launched in six languages: English, Chinese, Russian, Arabic, French and Spanish.
In a statement on the new services, WHO Director-General Tan Desai said:
Digital technology provides us with unprecedented opportunities to enable vital health information to spread faster than pandemics, helping us save lives and protect vulnerable groups. We are proud to have partners like Facebook and WhatsApp that are supporting us in delivering vital health information to billions of people.