BACKGROUND: The World Health Organization named the phenomenon of misinformation spread through the social media``infodemics", and recognized the need to curb it . Misinformation infodemics undermine not only population safety, but also compliance to the suggestions/prophylactic measures recommended in pandemics .
OBJECTIVE: The aim of this pilot study was to review the impact of social media on general population``fear"in``infoveillance"studies during the COVID-19 pandemic .
METHODS: PRISMA protocol was followed and six out of twenty studies were retrieved, meta-analyzed, and had their findings presented in the form of a Forest plot .
RESULTS: The summary random and significant event rate was 0.298 , 95% CI respectively 0.213 and 0.400, suggesting that social media-circulated misinformation related to COVID-19 triggered public fear and other psychological manifestations . These findings merit special attention by public health authorities .
CONCLUSIONS: Thus,``infodemiology"and Infoveillance are valid tools in the hands of epidemiologists to help prevent dissemination of false information with potentially damaging effects.