What you need to know
- The WHO is turning to WhatsApp as a way of disseminating the latest updates on the coronavirus.
- The WhatsApp bot will also answer any questions you might have about the pandemic.
- You can find the WHO at +41 79 893 18 92.
As fears around the coronavirus intensify, social media is abuzz with information pertaining to the virus. WhatsApp, often the primary vector for many disinformation campaigns, is now being used by the World Health Organization to set the record straight on COVID-19 (via GSMArena).
Add +41 79 893 18 92 to your contact list, and you'll be able to meet the WHO's WhatsApp bot. Sending it a text (you can say anything) will sign you up to automatically receive the latest updates from the WHO on the pandemic.
In addition, you also get the option to query it for any information regarding the virus using a numbered query system that should be familiar to you if you've ever used a USSD/Quick Code to check your mobile balance. Even better, you can use emojis for the same purpose.
Some of the available options include the latest stats for the virus' spread, questions about preventative measures, and a fact sheet dispelling some common myths about the illness. There's also an option to donate, if you're feeling generous.