With half the world’s population in lockdown up until recently, barely anyone is interested in news that’s not about corona. We’re all looking for the latest updates, stories, and data about the march of the novel coronavirus from China, across Asia, into Europe, the US, Latin America, Africa, and around the entire globe. Researchers in Antarctica might be the only beings on the planet not to be at risk from COVID-19 right now.
All around the world, movie stars and singers have been pushed out of the limelight. Virologists and epidemiologists are our new celebrities, and anyone who can explain viral load and exponential infection rates is our new best friend.
Although it seems like every second person is now an expert in viruses and public health, there are some people who are real experts and whose opinion means more than others. We’ve crawled social media to find the 10 best accounts to follow for interesting, useful, and sometimes entertaining #coronavirus updates.
The official Twitter account for the US’ Centers for Disease Control & Prevention is the best place to go for the latest updates about public health measures, safety requirements, and new developments regarding the coronavirus.
You’ll find plenty of data here about the spread of COVID-19 across the US, and advice about keeping yourself safe and healthy during the pandemic.
2. Helen Branswell
Helen Branswell is one of Stat News’ lead writers, focusing on infectious diseases. She spent a lot of time following the Ebola outbreak and tracking the path of other viruses, writes extensively about vaccines, and has been tweeting about coronavirus and the dangers it poses since before anyone was really listening. Her perspective is truly global, and she’s one of the few who is on record as having warned the world about corona long before it hit outside of China.
Helen shares her wisdom and experience in infectious diseases to help explain how the coronavirus spreads, and to predict what’s going to happen next in different countries. She often hosts live Q&A sessions on Twitter and features as a guest on various podcasts, which she then posts on her Twitter feed, so this is a great way to find the answers to any burning COVID-19 questions you may have.
3. Max Roser
Max Roser is a researcher at the University of Oxford, UK, and the founder of Our World In Data, so it’s not surprising to see a lot of graphs and charts on his Twitter feed. Max’s tweets are a delight for anyone who loves data and visualizations. He brings together a lot of information about the spread of coronavirus infections and death rates in Europe and the US, which is useful for anyone who wants a broader global picture.
One of the best things about following Max is that you don’t just get to see the latest graphs and charts, you’ll also get some explanation about what they represent and what takeaway you should learn from them, which is a big help to people like me who sometimes feel like they are drowning in data.
4. Maia Majumder
Maia Majumder is one of the many epidemiologists who have suddenly been thrust into center stage by corona. She shares the newest epidemiological research and papers on the coronavirus by her own team and by fellow epis (as they like to call themselves) around the world, investigating issues like the reproduction rate of the virus and the impact of age and family structure on infection patterns.
Maia is the person you want to follow if you’re interested in understanding more about the impact of corona on society, or you’re curious about different models about the future path that the coronavirus could take. She explains a lot about epidemic forecasting and disease mapping.
5. Xinyan Yu
Xinyan Yu is a journalist currently working for the BBC World Service, but also writing articles for other news outlets. Yu is a native of Wuhan, the birthplace of the coronavirus, but also an American journalist, so she brings a unique Chinese-American perspective to the entire pandemic.
Yu mostly shares human interest stories and real incidents on the ground in both China and the US. She opens your eyes to how China is coping with the early stages of post-corona, as well as cutting straight to the human heart of COVID-19 by giving a voice to front-line healthcare staff, essential workers, people at high risk of dying from COVID-19, and anyone whose lives have been touched by the virus.
6. Silvia Stringhini
Silvia Stringhini is an epidemiologist with a special interest in the biological consequences of social inequalities. She lives in Switzerland and has traveled and worked around the world, so her feed displays a range of data, opinions, and experiences from leaders in the field of international public health.
Silvia is a good choice if you want to follow just one Twitter account, but gain an understanding of the ways that different countries’ decisions impact on international health and the spread of COVID-19.
7. NYC COVID19 Nurse On Duty
The name of this anonymous account says it all. Here, you’ll find regular updates from the heart of NYC’s COVID-19 battlefield. The hidden nurse behind the Twitter account shares their fears, anxieties, and concerns about long shifts and a lack of PPE in the hospitals that have been the hardest-hit in America.
COVID19 Nurse’s tweets are sometimes heart-breaking, sometimes inspiring, but always completely real.
8. Some Boys’ Mother
Sometimes the best way to deal with fear and anxiety is with humor, and you’ll find plenty of that here. Some Boys’ Mother regularly tweets and retweets snarky, sarcastic, and darkly funny comments on life in quarantine that will get you to nod in sympathy and maybe even crack a laugh, which is something we all need right now.
9. Scott Gottlieb, MD
Scott Gottlieb is a doctor, former commissioner of the FDA, and very informed person about the progress of the coronavirus in the US and around the world. TV channels like CNBC and publications like the Wall Street Journal pay him for his expert advice, and you can access it all when you follow him on Twitter.
Scott is a great person to follow for a combination of data, insights into the corona lockdown, and new details about potential treatments that could bring an end to the COVID-19 pandemic sooner rather than later.
10. Twitter Marketing
If you’re a small business owner, you’re probably in the process of adapting your business model and client communication to the new normal.
The Twitter Marketing account is full of inspirational stories of how brands are navigating the coronavirus crisis with valuabe lessons about brand positioning, messaging, and marketing.
You’re likely to get hooked on their “Brands Leading the Way”: a weekly update that features the most creative, helpful and inspiring tweets from some of world’s top brands.
And… it’s a wrap!
There you have it. Now you’re the proud possessor of 10 top Twitter accounts that will keep you supplied with data, graphs, explanations, business advice, first-hand accounts, and light relief about the 2020 coronavirus pandemic. If you like our list, do share it with friends who enjoy a little geek speak!