The power of a uniquely open service during a public health emergency is clear. As the nation combats the COVID-19 pandemic, the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare (@MoHFW_INDIA), the Government of India today onboarded Twitter Seva to help Indians with a speedy resolution to their health-related queries. This public service is aimed at enabling transparent e-governance delivery in real-time and will allow the Ministry to communicate effectively and at scale with the public, especially in crisis situations like the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
Dr. Harsh Vardhan, Union Minister of Health & Family Welfare, announced the dedicated account @CovidIndiaSeva with a Tweet.
Launched @CovidIndiaSeva to respond to citizens’ queries in real time ❗️
Experts will share authoritative public health information reg #COVIDー19 swiftly at scale, helping to build a direct channel for communication with citizens.
Post your queries!#CovidIndiaSeva @PMOIndia pic.twitter.com/9dPKh9Qklc
— Dr Harsh Vardhan (@drharshvardhan) April 21, 2020
Commenting on the announcement, Dr. Harsh Vardhan (@drharshvardhan), Union Minister for Health & Family Welfare, said, “Over time, Twitter has proved to be an essential service for both the government and citizens to interact and exchange information, especially in times of need. As #IndiaFightsCorona with social distancing, we are happy to make a concerted online effort by adopting the Twitter Seva solution. It is powered by a team of experts who are trained and equipped to treat and respond to each query uniquely, and at scale. This will enable us to establish a direct channel with Indian citizens, connecting with them in real-time to provide authoritative health and public information.”
Twitter Seva is a customized live query redressal service. It works on a dashboard that helps process large volumes of Tweets, converts them into resolvable tickets, and assigns them to the relevant authority for real-time resolution. These conversations are transparent and everyone on the service can benefit from the responses received from the authorities around common queries. It is important to note is only for broader queries and does not require the public to share personal contact details or health record details.
Twitter is actively working with various state governments to upskill various departments on COVID response management. It has also supported and enabled the Govt of Karnataka, Maharashtra, Jharkhand and Uttar Pradesh to set-up dedicated COVID-Response accounts. Govt. of Karnataka, Maharashtra. Follow them here: DIPR Karnataka, Maharashtra Control room, Jharkhand COVID Helpline, UP COVID helpline, Andhra Pradesh.
The dedicated account will be accessible to people to be it local or national in their scope. Whether it is for the latest updates on measures taken by the Government, learning about access to healthcare services or seeking guidance for someone who perhaps has symptoms but is unsure about where to turn to for help, the service will empower the public to reach out to the authorities. People in India can get their queries answered by Tweeting to @CovidIndiaSeva.
Over the years, as more and more people from India get on Twitter, an increasing amount of content across languages is being created. The service has witnessed a considerable rise in conversations in Indic languages. In fact, after English, Hindi is the second most used language on Twitter in India and non-English Tweets account for 50% of all Tweets on the service here. The service’s compatibility and usage across Indian languages will enable the Ministry in communicating with people from all parts of India.
Twitter has open lines of communication with the relevant authorities in the central and state governments and public health officials, to ensure they can troubleshoot account issues, and seek strategic counsel as they use the power of Twitter to mitigate harm and connect with the public at large.
Sharing her thoughts on this partnership, Mahima Kaul (@misskaul), Director, Public Policy, India and South Asia, Twitter, said, “To navigate this global health crisis, we need a collaborative approach between the government and our industry. Our work has never been more critical and our service has never been in higher demand. People from all parts of the country are taking to Twitter to be equipped with the quality information from authoritative sources. The Ministry of Health & Family Welfare has a vital role in ensuring that people have timely access to the latest official information and we’re delighted to play our part to support their critical mission.
● Follow @CovidIndiaSeva for the latest credible information related to COVID-19
● You can also Tweet to @CovidIndiaSeva for the response to a particular COVID-19 related query, and authorities will reply to your Tweet with appropriate information
● The account is to provide responses to your Coronavirus-related queries. However, Tweeting with your query does not require you to reveal any private or sensitive information such as contact details, identity documents, personal health records, etc.