WHO launches interactive COVID-19 service on Facebook Messenger

San Francisco, April 15 (IANS) The World Health Organization (WHO) has launched an interactive experience on Facebook Messenger to provide people accurate and timely information about the coronavirus pandemic.

WHO will leverage Messenger’s reach to more than 1.3 billion monthly active users who will now be able to ask questions and get quick answers from the WHO’s “Health Alert” interactive service on Messenger, which is free to use, the social networking giant said in a statement late Tuesday.

The WHO Health Alert service has already reached more than 12 million people through WhatsApp.

“Now, through Messenger, WHO will be able to expand their reach as they continue to provide people everywhere with important information. This is critical as widespread misinformation can create unnecessary fear and panic in this already trying time,” said Stan Chudnovsky, Vice President of Messenger.

The WHO created the Messenger experience with support from Sprinklr as part of the programme Facebook recently announced to pair developer partners with health organizations to help them connect with people and deliver critical information during the COVID-19 outbreak.

More than 20 government health organisations have launched Messenger experiences such as UNICEF, Argentina’s Ministry of Health, the Government of France, the Government of India, and Pakistan’s Ministry of National Health Services.

The WHO’s Health Alert interactive service can be accessed through the WHO’s official Facebook Page by selecting Send Message or through the dedicated Messenger link.

In many of the regions hit hardest by COVID-19, total messaging through Facebook’s family of apps has increased by more than 50 per cent, informed the company.

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