YouTube unveils new health policy to tackle medical misinformation

YouTube unveils new health policy to tackle medical misinformation

Contradictory health content to be removed include COVID-19, reproductive health, cancer, harmful substances, practices

By Ovunc Kutlu

ISTANBUL (AA) - YouTube announced its new health policy Tuesday to tackle medical misinformation shared on its platform.

The company said it needs a policy framework that holds up in the long term and preserves the balance of removing harmful content while ensuring space for debate and discussion.

"While specific medical guidance can change over time as we learn more, our goal is to ensure that when it comes to areas of well-studied scientific consensus, YouTube is not a platform for distributing information that could harm people," it said.

The company said it will streamline dozens of its existing medical misinformation guidelines to fall under three categories -- prevention, treatment, and denial.

"These policies will apply to specific health conditions, treatments, and substances where content contradicts local health authorities or the World Health Organization," it said.

"To determine if a condition, treatment or substance is in scope of our medical misinformation policies, we’ll evaluate whether it’s associated with a high public health risk, publicly available guidance from health authorities around the world, and whether it’s generally prone to misinformation," it added.

YouTube said it will remove content that contradicts and disputes health authority guidance on the prevention, transmission, and treatments of specific health conditions from the platform.

Some topics that will see contradictory content removed include the coronavirus, reproductive health, cancer, and harmful substances and practices.

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