Advocating for an informed public - facilitating accurate COVID-19 resources

Dear PRSA Phoenix Chapter members and Greater Phoenix communicators/PR professionals, a memo from PRSA National:

A massive amount of COVID-19 related information is being delivered to all of us from hundreds of sources at an unprecedented pace. The role of public relations professionals as advocates for truth, accuracy and transparency in accordance with the PRSA Code of Ethics is integral to our daily practice but especially crucial in times of crisis.

Current circumstances offer an opportunity for us to be part of the solution. Our expertise can help drown out the din and assist communities in deciphering facts from fiction. The World Health Association (WHO) says there is an “infodemic,” and with the abundance of information comes the danger that this could overwhelm people to the point they begin to tune out just when they most need to be informed.

PRSA and the PRSA Health Academy believe the best work we can do is to simplify the process and direct people to reliable, credible information resources. As a result, we’ve created the INFOdemicRx infographic (attached) that depicts a simple, three-action-steps guide to help consumers and communities find the information they need amidst conflicting claims, hype, misinformation, disinformation and information overload.

WE need your help getting this into the hands of community conduits so they can, in turn, distribute it to their constituents. Please join the effort! Some suggested options:

Post this on every accessible website starting with your PRSA Chapter site. Share broadly on social media channels tagging @PRSA. Distribute to your personal contacts and groups or organizations in your network.

Reach out to local media for coverage, offering a link directly to the INFOdemicRx infographic - media can post on their websites with no limits on usage. If you can get an interview, use the details in this email and the infographic, for quick sound bites. People don’t need to hear ‘wash your hands’ from us – they need to know where they can get the info they need, when they need it, and which sources they can trust.

This is a global emergency where the expertise of public relations professionals can have a positive impact. The infographic and additional background information that may be helpful for PRSA members, including editorial posts from PRSA Chair T. Garland Stansell, APR, can also be found on PRsay.

For more information, please contact Nance Larsen, Chair, PRSA Advocacy Committee or Dennis Wilson, Jr., PRSA Health Academy Chair-elect.

Be safe and stay healthy!

Karen L. Mateo

Chief Communications Officer, PRSA

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