At the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, the World Health Organization (WHO) developed a free, automated 24-hour WhatsApp Health Alert service in collaboration with Praekelt.Org, using Turn.io technology.
The chat service was initiated to provide up-to-date COVID-19 information to citizens across the globe that includes the latest figures, how the virus spreads, symptoms and treatment – including vaccinations - via a user-friendly menu of options.
As we mark World Immunization Week, we reflect on a recent study by French researchers that has found that addressing concerns related to the Covid-19 vaccination via a chat interface might be capable of swaying the vaccine-hesitant.
“Interacting a few minutes with a chatbot answering the most common questions about COVID-19 vaccines increased people’s intention to get vaccinated and had a positive impact on their attitudes toward the vaccines,” said researchers from the French research institutions CNRS, INSERM, and ENS-PSL in an article in the Journal of Experimental Psychology: Applied. “Chatbots could be a powerful resource to fight COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy.”
The theme for this year’s World Immunization Week is “Long Life for All”. “It aims to unify people around the idea that vaccines make it possible for us to follow our dreams, protect our loved ones and live a long, healthy life,” says WHO in a statement.
At Turn.io we are proud to continue to provide the machine learning technology for WHO’s Health Alert chat service.
The WHO Health Alert chat service on WhatsApp continues to provide information on COVID-19 and vaccines in multiple languages. Click here to access the service.