Journalists’ Safety in the Time of Pandemic

Anahit Danielyan


The new Coronavirus and the situation in many countries imply more cautiousness and restrictions for reporters.

How to work in conditions of mass-spread health threats (currently – in conditions of the world-famous Coronavirus pandemic,) how to cover the existing situation without jeopardizing your own safety?

Media.am has put together a few tips for journalists on safe and effective work during pandemics, using the guides by Asian American Journalists association, Committee to protect journalists, Global Investigative Journalism Network and BBC.

∅ To minimize the risks of contracting a virus, a journalist with a strong health should cover the issue. Especially when it is essential to work in a hospital, with Coronavirus-positive patients, doctors or isolated persons. It is equally important not to get sick and not to get others sick.

∅ Use protective masks and gloves if working in or visiting an infected site, such as a medical treatment facility. Other medical protective equipment such as a bodysuit and a full face mask may also be necessary.

If you are operating in a health facility, market, or farm, never place your equipment on the floor. Always decontaminate equipment after visiting such places.

∅Stay at least 3 feet away from each other while working, whenever possible.

∅ Never eat or drink while touching any hospital item or animals.

∅ Always ensure your hands are washed with hot water and soap before, during, and after working in an affected area.

∅Avoid touching your face with your hands. Use your elbow or a tissue to cover your mouth and nose as you sneeze and then throw the tissue into a dustbin with an automatically-closing lid.

Most importantly, staying safe is primary, and no story is worth dying for. Contracting a virus or putting your life at risk is not about playing the hero but about creating a new problem for people around you.

Anahit Danielyan


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