Ahmed Al-Rawi, assistant professor at the School of Communication at Simon Fraser University. (SFU photo)

Ahmed Al-Rawi, assistant professor at the School of Communication at Simon Fraser University. (SFU photo)

B.C. prof joins 19 global experts to create online guide to fight COVID misinformation

‘The handbook can be an important tool for those in our communities who do not believe in the importance of COVID vaccinations’

Some of the world’s leading scientists and experts, including one in B.C., have joined forces to fight conspiracy theories and misinformation about vaccines as inoculations to combat COVID-19 roll out around the globe.

Simon Fraser University communications professor Ahmed Al-Rawi is one of the lead authors who developed a new online handbook that he hopes will ease concerns and maintain trust in public healthcare.

“The handbook can be an important tool for those in our communities who do not believe in the importance of COVID vaccinations, despite the scientific evidence that shows its effectiveness,” Al-Rawi said.

The 21-page “practical guide” is available to be downloaded in seven languages, with more translations soon to be added, and covers topics such as common myths about COVID-19 and vaccines, as well as cultural differences in vaccine uptake and why it’s important to trust scientists.

The guide also breaks down misconceptions around “freeriding,” which is a term to describe when someone doesn’t get vaccinated because they assume enough people already have been to achieve herd immunity and will properly protect them from getting the virus.


@ashwadhwani
ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism? Make a donation here.

Coronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

RCMP responded to 256 calls from April 12 to April 19, 2021. (Black Press file photo)
Terrace RCMP briefs: Bear spray, assault with a hammer and hot tub theft

RCMP responded to 256 calls from April 12 to April 19, 2021

The Pure Movements dance group performing ‘Coffee, Coffee, Coffee…Americano’ during the 2019 Pacific Northwest Music Festival, the last to be held before the COVID-19 pandemic forced the cancellation of the 2020 and 2021 editions of the two-week Terrace event. (Submitted Photo/ Ken Juniper)
Spotlighting the Arts 2021 brings performances to the people during pandemic

The initiative was created by organizers of the cancelled Pacific Northwest Music Festival

There were 29 new COVID-19 cases recorded in Terrace between April 11 and April 15, 2021. (British Columbia Centre for Disease Control)
New COVID-19 cases in Terrace increase by 15 compared to previous week

There were 29 new COVID-19 cases recorded in the Terrace area between April 11 and April 17

Nass forest service road deactivated due to Landslide. (NLG Conservation/Facebook)
Landslide deactivates Nass-Kinskutch service road

Service road going to Kitsault and Alice Arm affected

Terrace-based Skeena Diversity Society among organizations to receive provincial funding to combat (Skeena Diversity Society/Facebook)
Skeena Diversity Society receives provincial funding to combat racism

The provincial funding extends to 36 organizations covering 57 communities

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and United States President Joe Biden smile as they say farewell following a virtual joint statement in Ottawa, Tuesday, February 23, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Trudeau pledges to cut emissions by 40% to 45% by 2030, short of U.S. goal

Trudeau announced target during a virtual climate summit convened by U.S. President Joe Biden

BC Hydro released a survey Thursday, April 22. It found that many British Columbians are unintentionally contributing to climate change with their yard maintenance choices. (Pixabay)
Spend a lot of time up-keeping the yard? You may be unintentionally contributing to climate change

Recent BC Hydro survey finds 60% of homeowners still use gas-powered lawnmowers and yard equipment

Journal de Montreal is seen in Montreal, on Thursday, April 22, 2021. The daily newspaper uses a file picture of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau dressed in traditional Indian clothing during his trip to India to illustrate a story on the Indian variant of the coronavirus. Paul Chiasson/The Canadian Press
Montreal newspaper blasted for front-page photo of Trudeau in India

Trudeau is wearing traditional Indian clothes and holding his hands together in prayer beside a caption that reads, ‘The Indian variant has arrived’

Nanaimo RCMP say a man was injured while pouring gunpowder on a backyard fire in Harewood on Wednesday, April 21. (File photo)
Nanaimo man hospitalized after pouring gunpowder onto backyard fire

RCMP investigating explosion in Harewood also came across a still for making alcohol on property

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry arrives for briefing on the COVID-19 situation, B.C. legislature, Oct. 26, 2020 (B.C. government)
B.C. sees 1,006 COVID-19 cases Thursday, ‘alarming’ 502 in hospital

Vaccine bookings for people aged 60 and older set to start

Shannon Zirnhelt, from left, her son Lockie, 3, Julia Zirnhelt, 13, and Ella Krus, 13, co-founders of Third Planet Crusade are featured in a music video set to air on Earth Day, April 22, 2021. (Monica Lamb-Yorski photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
B.C.-made music video launched in time for Earth Day 2021

Singer songwriter Shannon Zirnhelt worked with Third Planet Crusade on the project in the Cariboo

Ambulance crews have been busy with a record number of emergency overdose calls this Wednesday, April 21. (BC Emergency Health Services)
B.C. paramedics responded to a record 138 overdose calls in a single day

Wednesday’s calls included 48 in the Vancouver Coastal Health region and 51 in Fraser Health

B.C. Health Minister Adrian Dix and Premier John Horgan describe vaccine rollout at the legislature, March 29, 2021. (B.C. government)
B.C. COVID-19 hotspots targeted as AstraZeneca vaccine runs low

17,000 appointments booked the first day for people aged 40 and up

Most Read