The Future of Health
Thursday 29 July 2021
Virtual Digital Forum: How the Government of South Africa can Leverage Social Media in the fight against Covid-19
The Digital Media Directorate at the Government Communication and Information System (GCIS) and the Institute for the IFK hosted a webinar problematising how the Government of South Africa can more effectively disseminate information during the Covid-19 pandemic, as well as contribute to a more efficient COVID-19 vaccine rollout plan. The specific objectives of the Forum were are to: i.Discuss how social media (SoMe) can be used to disseminate information – its strengths and limitation. ii.Discuss ways to mitigate the vices of SoME (infodemic, misinformation, disinformation and fake news). iii.Identify groups that can be excluded by reach and mitigation strategies; and iv.Discuss COVID-19 variants and vaccination rollout plan. Opening remarks were given by Ms Tasneem Carrim, Chief Director: Policy and Research at GCIS, while Professor Benjamin Smart, Director of the Future of Health Research Group at IFK chaired. The speakers were Professor Mandla Radebe, Associate Professor in the Department of Strategic Communication at UJ; Professor Admire Mare, a Research Fellow at UJ and Ms Lebogang Mulaisi, the Labour Market Policy Coordinator at COSATU.