Staff Reporter:: Bangladesh NGO’s Network for Radio and Communication (BNNRC) organized a three-day-long workshop (ToT) at YWCA Training Room in Dhaka on Fact-Checking and Verification Techniques on Health Journalism for an in-depth reporting on important and complex health issues to enhance the professional skills of journalists with the support of The Asia Foundation on 17-19 August 2021.

The purpose of the workshop is to enhance the capacity of journalists working in creating and publishing objective, insightful and influential news on health management; Encourage journalists to acquire knowledge and skills in modern techniques (infographics, data analysis, data visualization) in data verification and presentation in creating neutral and balanced health reports. A total of 25 journalists from national dailies, online news portals, and television channels participated in the workshop.

Mr. AHM Bazlur Rahman, CEO, BNNRC welcomed the participants and highlighted the objective of the workshop. The moderators of the three-day-long workshop are Ruhul Amin Rushd, Senior News Editor, Banglavision; Shishir Moral, Special Correspondent, Daily Prothom Alo; Toufiq Maruf, Deputy Chief Reporter, Kalerkantho; Ms. Zannatul Bakiya Keka, Special Correspondent, Channel i; Minhaz Uddin, Assistant Professor, Department of Mass Communication and Journalism, Jagannath University; and Mohammad Mahbub Alam, Senior Graphics Artist, Business Post.

The workshop focuses on health journalism in the current context, reliable sources, sources in health journalism, information verification techniques and media, monitoring techniques for misinformation published through social media, and sensitivity to covid-19 reporting. Participants were also provided with insights into the importance and strategies of misinformation, disinformation, mal-information prevention, and the use of infographics in reporting, as well as various means of enhancing national and international communication in health-journalism.

Ruhul Amin Rushd discussed on “Fact checking and Verification tools and resources” & “Monitoring of social media for misinformation”. Shishir Moral discussed on “Health Reporting in the Present Context”. Toufiq Maruf discussed on “Reliable Source for Health Reporting” & “Sensitivity of COVID-19 Reporting, National and International Linkage of Health Journalism”. Zannatul Bakiya Keka discussed on “Health Reporting on Electronic Media”. Minhaz Uddin discussed on “Misinformation, Disinformation and Mal-information” and Mohammad Mahbub Alam discussed on “Develop and use of Infographics on the report”.

It is hoped that the workshop will enable journalists to be more diligent and sensitive in verifying information to produce impartial and balanced health reports. Besides, the journalists will be encouraged to use other modern techniques including infographics in presenting the data of the report.

In the concluding session Md. Zakaria, Senior Program Manager, The Aisa Foundation was present. A H M Bazlur Rahman, CEO, BNNRC stressed on data driven journalism and using of infographics in the reports. The training was ended after distribution of certificates.

BNNRC is in Special Consultative Status with the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) accredited with World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS), SDGs Media Compact of the United Nations, and UN WSIS prize winner 2016, Champion 2017, 2019, 2020, and 2021. BNNRC’s approach to media development is both knowledge-driven and context-sensitive, and it takes into account the challenges and opportunities created by the rapidly changing media environment in the era of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

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