COVID-19 virus has had an intense consequence in society, including mental and physical health. However, the pandemic’s guidance appears to shift each day, with the internet providing often-uncertain advice. People looking for concrete facts about the pandemic and how to protect themselves and others do not know where to invest their efforts. Not all information out in many blogs and sites is accurate hence becoming a challenge to filter through to get credible facts and data. Individuals working in public health follow and update the latest news and scientific literature.
To address the demand for reliable information, facilities launched COVID-19 chatlines, which permit people to communicate online and in actual time with trained public health practitioners and access to relevant internet sources. For instance, PediaVirus chatline (Lafusco et al., 2021). The chatline was an essential tool in disseminating public health information and creating awareness on COVID-19 (Chesak et al., 2020). Previous statistics show that the chatline was busy, and the high call volume was due to increased anxiety and worry about the pandemic in 2020. People engaged in the chatline to experience firsthand information rather than outsourcing news from a media source.
Chatlines are essential since they help in information provision, connectivity, and triage as digital developments for assisting individuals with intentional self-harm, depression, anxiety, and suicide. Moreover, other blended and automated therapeutic interventions such as telephone messages and calls to reach those with limited digital assets, forums, suicide risk evaluations, and innovations can help passively or actively mitigate risk. Previous policies and regulations have not been able to evaluate and quantify the effectiveness of chatlines during combating COVID-19. However, these innovations have not been efficient such as chatlines. The analysis is essential since it will provide recommendations and alternatives towards addressing issues resulting in reduced call volumes in chatlines. Moreover, the recommendation will give important information via the chatline and increase awareness of how to practice social distancing, wash hands and apply other significant measures to reduce the risk of infection.
According to the latest COVID-19 chatline statistics, the problem is that there is a low call volume during the chatline, which might be due to internet overwhelming, reduced awareness, and embarking on regular routines. Stakeholders are hospitals, graduates working on the call center, citizens seeking information, and the government. The objectives and goals for the solutions will increase calls in chatlines, promote awareness and dispense credible details. Peer-reviewed articles and government websites will provide sources and ideas for recommendations.
Analysis of Alternatives
Healthcare interventions are evolving to provide better and more reliable communication to deliver a patient outcome. Healthcare commerce requires real-time communication like enterprise chat apps and telemedicine to bring doctor-patient on demand. Moreover, other messaging applications, forums, and technologies have progressed in the healthcare sector. Conversely, while parallel to in-person amenities, telemental health care is a mainly good and inexpensive platform and uses current technologies and adaptable design (Whaibeh, Mahmoud & Naal, 2020).
Research supports that social networking sites, blogs, video sites, forums, and online chat rooms have also helped people engage with others both individually and effectively and disseminate information. These alternative platforms have been effective in dispensing information about the pandemic, although they are misinforming and some facts are not credible (Cuan-Baltazar et al., 2020). However, chatlines have been effective due to the assurance that an individual will remain anonymous, which motivates gaining valuable and timely information.
Facilities need to invest in alternative social media platforms. The platforms help disseminate COVID-19 information and support health care in a variety of conducts, comprising nurturing professional influences, endorsing timely communication with patients and family members, and teaching and informing clients and health care specialists (Banerjee & Meena, 2021). Moreover, the sudden emergence of coronavirus vaccines and reduced infection rate have reduced the effort to dispense awareness and education about the pandemic to people (Chou & Budenz, 2020). Therefore, many people have diverted their attention to other matters hence not engaging in chatlines and the internet. In my opinion, facilities need to increase awareness of the importance of chatlines in dispensing new information, data, and evidence about the pandemic.
Regardless of ample information about COVID-19, the attitude to engage in positive inquiries has not always been positive. Thereby, imposing further education and awareness to deliver the importance of questioning, engaging in communication, and continuous preventive practice can help decrease contraction and transmission of COVID‐19. Creating awareness will help initiate alternative communicative platforms and increase call volume. Moreover, incorporate other credible platforms to track individuals’ insights and reactions towards public health communications to allow alternative enhancements towards COVID-19. Trudging through volumes of advice on the web may be extremely overwhelming for some people. However, facilities need to offer information and awareness about chatlines to help users inquire, get replies, and be directed to the proper resources.
Banerjee, D., & Meena, K. S. (2021). COVID-19 as an “infodemic” in public health: critical role of the social media. Frontiers in Public Health, 9, 231.
Chesak, S. S., Perlman, A. I., Gill, P. R., & Bhagra, A. (2020, September). Strategies for the resiliency of medical staff during COVID-19. Mayo Clinic Proceedings (Vol. 95, No. 9, pp. S56-S59). Elsevier.
Chou, W. Y. S., & Budenz, A. (2020). Considering emotion in COVID-19 vaccine communication: addressing vaccine hesitancy and fostering vaccine confidence. Health communication, 35(14), 1718-1722.
Cuan-Baltazar, J. Y., Muñoz-Perez, M. J., Robledo-Vega, C., Pérez-Zepeda, M. F., & Soto-Vega, E. (2020). Misinformation of COVID-19 on the internet: infodemiology study. JMIR public health and surveillance, 6(2), e18444.
Iafusco, M., Ciampa, C., De Maddi, F., Palamone, G., Quarantiello, F., De Luca, G., … & Iafusco, D. (2021). PediaVirus chatline: all together against COVID-19. Archives of Disease in Childhood, 106(3), e12-e12.
Whaibeh, E., Mahmoud, H., & Naal, H. (2020). Telemental health in the context of a pandemic: the COVID-19 experience. Current Treatment Options in Psychiatry, 7(2), 198-202.