Home News NCDC holds Training-Of-Trainers on Infodemic Management

NCDC holds Training-Of-Trainers on Infodemic Management

by Haruna Gimba

By Iyema David

The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), holds Training-Of-Trainers (ToT), workshop on Infodemic Management, as part of efforts to strengthen infodemic management systems in Nigeria.

The participants drawn from the six political zones in Nigeria.

The Director-General, NCDC, Dr Ifedayo Adetifa, on Wednesday in Keffi, Nassarawa State, at a five days ToT, said that the training was to support the country’s pandemic preparedness and to mitigate the current COVID-19 pandemic and other infectious diseases which was accompanied by an Infodemic.

NCDC said at part of its plans to establish/strengthen Infodemic Management at the sub-national level, the agency with support from Global Fund country grant to Nigeria will be setting up 12 sub-national Infodemic management structures/systems for COVID-19, and other priority diseases including Lassa Fever, Polio,Malaria, HIV/AIDS, Monkey pox, Yellow fever

The selected states are; Anambra, Bauchi, Bayelsa, Edo, Enugu, Gombe, Jigawa, Kano, Kwara, Ogun, Oyo, and Plateau States.

To achieve this, with financial and technical support from USAID and Breakthrough Action-Nigeria, and technical guidance from World Health Organisation Africa Infodemic Response Alliance (WHO-AIRA,) organized the five-day residential training of trainers’ workshop in Nasarawa state.

Adetifa, who was represented by Dr Pricilla Ibekwe, Head of Special Projects and Partnerships Unit at NCDC, said that the training revolved around misinformation, reports, recourses, and training tools amid the pandemic, followed by detecting and reporting COVID-19  and other priority diseases in a better way, and who determines the levels of misinformation associated with the pandemic.

He noted that the ToT would also study the role of fact-checking tools to tackle fake news on infectious diseases.

“The participants from the six geopolitical zones will complete the pre-test and the dimensional test of the training, to refine the skills of the trainees and ensure they will be able to train others, according to the project’s specific objectives. In recognition of the growing threats around misinformation in the country, “ he said.

Dr Adunola Oyegoke- Senior Program Officer Partner Liaison, Breakthrough Action Nigeria, said that the organisation with support from USAID has continued to provided technical assistance to the GoN for strengthening health security and supports capacity-building activities.

Oyegoke said that these includes; risk Communication and community engagement as well as addressing perceptions and misinformation for Lassa Fever, Yellow Fever, COVID-19 and other infectious diseases outbreak across the country. 

She said that the TOT would provide participants with a better understanding of the challenges they were likely to experience because of misinformation.

She noted that the training would be concluded with a discussion on how to stepdown the training in the states in order to equip Risk Communications and Community Engagement (RCCE), officers with the skills and tools needed to be able to establish a system for managing infodemics.

She added that this was based on the central tenet that information was the opposite of disinformation.

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