Preventing the spread of misinformation: Local health authorities ask public to use reputable sources for information


AMARILLO, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) — Local doctors and health professionals are asking the public to please stop turning to social media sites for medical advice and information.

Amarillo Public Health Authority, Dr. Todd Bell, stated during Wednesday, September 22’s City COVID-19 Update, that this continues to be a “fluid situation”. Considering all the changes and adjustments that have been made in the past twenty months, due to the pandemic, there is no doubt that the public is going to have questions. However, when seeking answers, make sure the source is reputable.

Unfortunately, Dr. Bell shared that he has seen many people turning to social media sites for information.

“We’re blessed to live in a free country and people can say lots of different things, and to quote a relative of mine, ‘you can’t cure stupid.’ So people sometimes say stupid things, and especially, they’ll do that in social media. And unfortunately, that is something that that we don’t have a way to be able to stop or to block,” said Dr. Bell.

Twenty months into the pandemic and things are still constantly changing. With this in mind, Dr. Bell reminded everyone that this is a fluid situation.

While many remain uncertain about vaccines and whether or not to get vaccinated, Dr. Bell and the other health experts on Wednesday’s call remind everyone that the vaccines are safe. For further emphasis, Chief Medical Officer at Northwest Texas Hospital, Dr. Brian Weis, shared a recent experience he had encouraging a patient of his who is expecting. Additionally, he provided her with a reputable source for further information.

“One of my patients recently- on the, there was a very nice one-page summary of the data for- for pregnant ladies. First, second, third trimester. Summarizing the data and final recommendations. It is an easy one-page printout, I was able to give to this lady, trying to encourage her to get that vaccine.”

For further information on vaccines or on the COVID-19 pandemic, local health officials recommend checking out the latest on the CDC’s website. This is where anyone can find clarification on who is currently eligible for a COVID-19 Vaccine Booster Shot.

As for pregnant women, specifically, Dr. Bell recommended the following sources:

As for general information about vaccines, Dr. Bell recommended checking out the Amarillo Public Health Department.

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