The Handbook
The Handbook

Social media is our go-to when it comes to important issues like politics, finance or Crown spoilers. But there’s almost nothing more helpful to be clued up on right now than Coronavirus, its spread, efforts to curb it and what that means for us, so of course we head to social media.

Except in a world where social media is a minefield of misinformation and cat videos it’s incredibly hard to know who to listen to, and who to trust. Here are some of the sources we’ve found helpful lately.

Johns Hopkins University

One of the best medical centres in the world, Johns Hopkins are the guys who created the COVID-19 Dashboard. It’s used by governments across the globe to map the pandemic as it spreads. Well worth a look to understand where the epicentres are and how efforts to stem the spread and numbers of cases, deaths and recoveries.

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Professor Chris Whitty

The Chief Medical Officer has become something of an unlikely hero of the COVID-19 outbreak, praised for his cool and his reliance on science. He’s got 77k followers but has only tweeted 39 times, having only joined Twitter when he was appointed to the CMO role. However, he’s a Corona go-to.

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The World Health Organisation

The WHO (not the band) are a must if you’re keen to stay informed and are a bit of a sucker for an infographic. The UN’s health agency, they’ve been banging the drum trying to make the world listen on Coronavirus since very early on. Listen to them here…

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UK Prime Minister

The government’s official mouthpiece, Boris uses the UK Prime Minister Facebook page to keep citizens up-to-date, stream his daily briefings and generally inform. Not too propaganda-ish, worth a follow.

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Daniel Dae Kim

This slightly obscure American actor is helpful for anyone who wants to know what it’s like to experience Coronavirus as a patient. Like the vast majority who catch the virus Dae Kim didn’t need hospitalisation. His two videos (during and after) are quite sweet.

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Helen Branswell

Some journalists write about food, drink, travel and the odd celebrities (us), while others concentrate on the more important stuff. Helen Branswell falls into the latter category, and as an infectious diseases expert for Stat she’s got her finger on the pulse – in this case literally. Thoughtful questions and helpful insight.

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David Juurlink

Sometimes’s it’s helpful to hear from someone on the front line, and David Juurlink, an American doctor, has experience treating coronavirus patients. He also has a lot to say about the US President’s response…

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Matt Hancock

Health Secretary Matt Hancock came to the job thinking that an app could change the world, and is now discovering that a 50 year old technology, the ventilator, may be his undoing. Whatever your politics, spare a thought for the man running the NHS at its darkest hour.

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Timothy Caulfield

Caulfield is helpful for batting away the Goop-inspired nonsense that seems to continually mislead the easily confused by bringing fact to bear. The Canadian professor is helpful in an age when a mouthpiece can be more powerful than even a modicum of common sense.

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Donald Trump

The epicentre of the coronavirus disease is currently Europe, with Italy bearing the brunt. But the one man vying to wrest that laurel from Europe is Donald J Trump, who has adopted a very different approach to the virus across the pond. The half-hearted US lockdown will now be over by Easter and the president wants to see churches ‘packed’ for Easter day services. A very different solution, and one that clinicians are confident will quickly overwhelm the US healthcare system. It’s possible he knows something the rest of us don’t, but either way it’s well worth keeping an eye on Trump as this progresses, millions of US lives are on the line…

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