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Health Information Week: 6th-12th July 2020

06 July 2020

Promoting and highlighting good quality health information.

“Fact: The coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is caused by a virus. NOT by bacteria” (World Health Organisation (WHO), 2002).  The coronavirus pandemic has highlighted the importance of access to and use of accurate and up to date information that can be trusted.  We are surrounded by so much information that it is not always easy to know what is fake or fact but there are skills and tools to help. For example, both WHO and the BBC have developed resources on myth busting information on coronavirus. 

This ability to access and understand health information that is trusted is important in enabling people to keep healthy, manage illnesses and health and improve their mental and physical quality of life. Therefore, health literacy - “the ability to access, review and use health information” (Carlyle, 2020) is important for everyone.  However, research shows that many people find it difficult to fully understand health information. Rowlands, et al. (2015) discovered that in a sample of adults, 43% found text difficult to interpret and adding in numbers increased the difficulty with 61% struggling to understand the information presented.  

Every year Health Education England (HEE) organise a “Health Information Week”, a national, multi-sector campaign to promote and highlight good quality health information for both the public and patients. This year it runs from Monday 6th - Sunday 12th July and details can be found online. This year it highlights the themes of finding trusted sources of information and well-being.  

Do you want accurate up to date information and research on coronavirus and Covid-19?  
A good starting point is our online reading list

Do you want help with searching for good sources of information and evaluating those sources? 
Take a look at our Information Skills guide 

Watch out for the ARU library @ARULibrary daily tweets of useful resources with the hashtag #HIW2020
You can follow Health Information Week more widely on twitter @Healthinfoweek  and hashtag  #HIW2020 .

Rowlands, G., Protheroe, J., Winkley, J., Richardson, M., Seed, P.T. and Rudd, R., 2015. A mismatch between population health literacy and the complexity of health information: an observational study. The British Journal of General Practice: The Journal of the Royal College of General Practitioners, [e-journal] 65 (635), pp.379. 10.3399/bjgp15X685285. [Accessed Jun 26, 2020].

WHO, 2020. Myth busters. [online] Available at: <> [Accessed: 26 June 2020].

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