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Media Coverage is Crucial During COVID-19 and Journalists Globally Need to Take Care of Themselves

The World Health Organization (WHO) declared the COVID-19 (novel coronavirus) outbreak a pandemic on March 11, 2020, and the number of cases continues to rise globally, according to the WHO. The Johns Hopkins University Coronavirus Resource Center is a safe and reliable resource to keep up to date with outbreak developments.

Journalists around the world are playing a crucial role in keeping the public informed about the virus and governments’ efforts to combat it. This means that members of the media are often potentially exposed to infection through travel, interviews, and the locations they find themselves working in.

As the situation continues to evolve and new information emerges, updated health advice and outbreak news will be issued by the relevant authorities. To keep up-to-date on the latest advice and restrictions, journalists covering the outbreak should monitor information from the WHO and their local public health bodies.

We need to focus on staying safe in the field. Due to the imposition of wide-ranging international travel restrictions, the vast majority of media assignments will likely remain domestic-based for the immediate future. All assignments are highly likely to change or be canceled with little or no notice, due to a fast-moving and rapidly evolving situation throughout the world.

Those who are planning to cover the COVID-19 outbreak, or who are already covering the pandemic should consider all safety measure available and protect themselves in order to avoid getting infected during work.

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