Building Trust During Scientific Uncertainty:

How Do We Better Respond to Outbreaks?

This article summarizes key takeaways from a panel discussion hosted by Boston University’s Center for Emerging Infectious Diseases Policy and Research (CEID). Some of the main arguments that were addressed include: (1) Scientific uncertainty and evidence building is part of the response to new diseases, but it complicates public communication; (2) When there is evolving data, it’s better to communicate scientific data in terms of likelihood & probability; (3) Disinformation is a threat to truth, and we must work to combat it. The summary offers provides insight from the perspective of infectious disease specialists regarding how to handle scientific uncertainty during disease outbreaks when information is constantly evolving. The video recording of the panel discussion is available for viewing.

Boston University Center for Emerging Infectious Diseases Policy & Research