This article highlights the necessity of local health departments to formulate effective risk communication plans to build resilient communities.
To make better informed decisions and to reduce distrust from the public, local public health departments must implement strategic risk communication plans to protect their communities. The COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated the need for leaders to recognize all critical communication channels and specifically to use social media more effectively. Local health departments should routinely communicate and engage with their audiences via social media by providing evidence-based information and avoiding misleading information. Combatting public health misinformation has actually become one of the most important tasks that local public health departments must include in their response plans. Still, they must not overlook traditional methods of disseminating information (e.g., press releases, public service announcements) while including innovative strategies into their plans. Developing the capacity to establish and sustain effective communication plans can help local health departments to better mitigate confusion, disseminate vital information, and protect communities.