ISLAMABAD             -          Pakistan and Facebook vowed strengthening collaboration to address health integrity challenges online to counter harmful content on social media.

A statement released by National Emergency Operations Centre (NEOC) said that Facebook delegation visited on 14 January to re-affirm the social media company’s commitment to work with the Government of Pakistan to improve health integrity online.

Receiving the delegation, Dr. Zafar Mirza, the Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on health, highlighted the importance of communicating correct health information online and stressed “the need to counter harmful content on social media. As was seen in Peshawar in April, it is not just jeopardizing polio eradication efforts but also putting the lives of our children at risk. Moreover, we see the power of Facebook everyday through the blood donation initiative.”

Facebook and the Ministry of Health have been collaborating on targeted efforts to improve the reach of positive public health messages, dispelling rumours and fighting propaganda.

 for the polio programme and the Safe Blood Transfusion Programme.

“The generous support provided by Facebook is instrumental in reaching out to parents and caregivers with accurate health information,” added Dr. Mirza.