Journal of Information Resources Management ›› 2022, Vol. 12 ›› Issue (5): 114-122.doi: 10.13365/j.jirm.2022.05.114

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Concept, Distribution and Causes of Conflicting Health Information

Dai Tong1 Du Jian2   

  1. 1.Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences, Peking Union Medical College, Beijing, 100005;
    2.National Institute of Health Data Science at Peking University, Beijing, 100191
  • Online:2022-09-26 Published:2022-10-20

Abstract: This article attempts to systematically explain the concept, distribution and causes of conflicting health information from the perspective of infodemiology. The COVID-19 pandemic has brought renewed attention to infodemic and infodemiology. Phenomenologically, infodemic is mainly manifested as an explosive growth of information around a certain disease in a short period of time, and usually presents abnormal states such as mis-/dis-information, conflicting/contradictory information. Its essence lies in the uncertainty, contradiction and conflict of medical evidence and knowledge. Conflicting health information is defined as two or more logically contradictory health-related claims, mainly involving three dimensions of its own characteristics, temporal distribution, and spatial distribution. The Internet and social media have become the main channels for people to obtain health information, but citizens' health information literacy is still low. Therefore, this paper summarizes the causes of conflicting health information and its application value in infoveillance, evidence synthesis, knowledge transformation, and health education.

Key words: Conflicting health information, Infodemiology, Mis-/dis-information, Health information literacy, COVID-19, Infoveillance, Health education

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