Czech Health Ministry to refute disinformation about the COVID-19 pandemic next year
The Czech Health Ministry recently announced it is planning to regularly inform the public about the most frequent forms of disinformation being disseminated about the novel coronavirus pandemic. Czech Health Minister Jan Blatný (for ANO) announced the new move at a press conference held after an extraordinary cabinet sessoin.
A comprehensive communications campaign explaining the Government's measures to prevent the novel coronavirus from spreading will not begin until 2021 because the tender process will not be done before year-end. The Government approved CZK 50 million [EUR 1.9 million] at the close of October for the campaign.
"From Monday [30 November] our press department will begin using our website, in the interim, to correct the most frequent disinformation. During our Friday press conferences we will choose the most essential disinformation and comment on it," the minister said.
Everything is proceeding more slowly around the comprehensive campaign than is desirable, according to the minister. However, he said it is necessary to follow lawful procedures.
After the Government's decision at the end of October, according to the minister, a tender was issued for a law office to draft the tender for the campaign supplier. "Currently the tender for the campaign itself is being issued. We cannot count on a result before 1 January, which is why we are also launching an interim campaign," the minister said.
The communications campaign should touch on across-the-board testing, face mask requirements, the eRouška smart quarantine application, combating disinformation, calls for volunteers, or calls to donate blood and plasma. The messaging should also concentrate on youth, social distancing, contact tracing, hygiene, lifestyle, and boosting immunity.
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