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Health workers prefer digital platforms to internal comms for info – Study

Researchers from the Human Sciences Research Council and UKZN say this calls for the government to improve its use of digital platforms to communicate with its employees and the general public.

FILE: The study was conducted between April and May and included over 7,600 health professionals across the country. Picture: AFP

DURBAN – A new study by the human sciences research council and the University of Kwazulu-Natal (UKZN) shows that nurses rely more on digital platforms including news media than on workplace circulars and scientific journals for COVID-19 related information.

Researchers from the Human Sciences Research Council and UKZN say this calls for the government to improve its use of digital platforms to communicate with its employees and the general public.

The study was conducted between April and May and included over 7,600 health professionals across the country.

Professor Mosa Moshabela from the UKZN says their study has shown that digital platforms need to be made more reliable – accessible and timely.

“A lot of the information being provided for health care workers has not kept up with the digital revolution. In a public health emergency, you need these digital platforms to provide immediate information.”

He said they have also found that there have been disparities in the training of doctors and nurses and this needs to be addressed.

“When you find a situation where nurses are not necessarily getting training, then you shouldn’t be surprised later on when they don’t have enough information.”

The study has recommended continued training of health care workers as more data relating to COVID-19 emerges.