Sense About Science have launched a new discussion forum today, called Healthy Evidence:
“We are very pleased to tell you that NHS Choices Behind the Headlines have asked us to partner with them on a new online forum to help people understand the science behind health claims and connect them with expertise. Healthy Evidence is launched today. Join the community here.”
The more people that join and share their insights into the science behind health reporting, the better the resource could become. Collating useful sources can help people judge which information is beneficial rather than bogus, and what’s likely or dubious.
The internet is a wonderful thing, but it’s full of conflicting advice and opinions, and when it comes to medicine/health, that can have dangerous and even life-threatening effects. People who have some small mistrust of medicine can have that fear amplified by horror stories, exaggerations, distorted tales and people out to take advantage of those who have their doubts.
Alternative medicine proponents are sometimes genuine, wanting to help people, but often they are out to catch people who are vulnerable. Their weapons of choice in convincing their potential clients and customers include anecdotes (often faked) and empty promises.
For people to avoid being manipulated by the unscrupulous types, it helps to be able to find accessible information that examines big claims of medical efficacy. Of course, people will ultimately make their own decisions, but it’s important not to let dodgy claims go unchallenged. Informed choices are better!
Healthy Evidence is part of the Ask for Evidence campaign which supports and encourages people to request for themselves the evidence behind news stories, marketing claims and policies. The aim is to help people understand the importance of evidence and increase the quality and accountability of evidence in public life.
If you like looking behind the headlines, examining claims and challenging misinformation, sign up! People are already talking about sugar, misleading cancer cure claims, being critical of health reporting, dementia tests, side effects, and a host of other topics.
Do spread the word!