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Evaluation of the content quality of YouTube videos as a source of information on alternate therapies for COVID-19 prevention or treatment
DescriptionThe objective of this study was to identify and assess the characteristics and content quality of the YouTube videos suggesting alternatives for either treating or preventing COVID-19 and their perception among the viewers. A comprehensive electronic search was conducted on YouTube, resulting in a total of 120 videos being selected for the study based on view count and relevance. The videos were evaluated for their content quality using the JAMA and DISCERN scoring system by two reviewers. The scores indicate the 20.8% of the videos were of very poor quality, 34.2% poor, 30.0% average, 11.7%, good, and 3.3% excellent. 40.8% of the videos were classified as misleading, 37.5% as useful, and 21.7% as neither/nor. Blogs/short films were the predominantly used media type for spreading misleading information, while government agencies and health information channels shared evidence-based information. There was a poor correlation between the viewer’s ratings and the quality assessment findings.