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This Version Posted: March 31, 2020

Photo of Lisa van der Vinne

Lisa van der Vinne
Health Promoter
HKPR District Health Unit

COVID-19 isn’t the only thing that’s gone viral. 

News about the pandemic has lit up cellphone screens and social media sites so much that it’s hard to keep up. Even someone like me, a big fan of current events and breaking news, has found it overwhelming to continuously check my Twitter account for updates.

What makes it harder is trying to separate COVID-19 fact from fiction, especially as misinformation spreads almost faster than the coronavirus itself. How does one cope in this environment?  

My strategy is simple: pick and follow credible sources of COVID-19 information. I make a point to check in daily with the Ontario Ministry of Health, Public Health Agency of Canada and the World Health Organization.

It’s also good to check what’s going on in your community. For that, I visit the HKPR District Health Unit and my local municipal government website to see what specific COVID-19 recommendations and updates are relevant.

Reading inaccurate social media posts that suggest the virus is caused by Wi-Fi, or that various natural products can give you immunity is disturbing. It’s important to call out these lies and instead encourage others to think critically and check with credible sources of COVID-19 information.

As much as I struggle with this, it’s also good to unplug from all the COVID-19 news once and awhile. Taking a break can be good for one’s mental health, so make time to read a book, call a friend, revisit an old hobby…  or some other form of self-care.

Staying well informed with COVID-19 facts is another way to fight fear and stop its spread! I think that’s worth retweeting!