• 1 School of Communication, Universiti Sains Malaysia, 11800 USM, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia
Health Educ Res, 2020 10 01;35(5):471-480.
PMID: 33090216 DOI: 10.1093/her/cyaa031


This study examined media coverage of COVID-19 in Nigeria with attention to the frequency and depth of coverage, story format, news sources, media tone and themes. Four widely read newspapers were content analysed between February 2020 and April 2020. Focus was on Daily Sun, Vanguard, Daily Trust and Leadership. Results indicated that the Nigerian media performed well in terms of covering the pandemic, which in turn created awareness. However, the coverage was not in-depth as most of the reported stories were short and were predominantly straight news. It was also observed that the media cited more of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) and government officials. Further findings disclosed that most of the stories were alarming and induced panic. Most common topics were coverage of cases in Nigeria, death rates and concerns about Nigeria's preparedness. Public sensitization and education were sparingly covered. Ethics healthcare workers could adhere to received minimal attention. The media should focus more on sensitizing and educating the public on the necessary steps to take in curbing the virus. They should refrain from over usage of alarming and panic tone in presenting the stories of COVID-19 pandemic in Nigeria.

* Title and MeSH Headings from MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine.