In some posts on social media and sent to Teyit to check, it was claimed that the John Hopkins map shows that the first case of the Covid-19 in Turkey has been seen in Kayseri. The post, shared on Twitter on 10 March 2020, got almost 80 retweets and 600 likes.
Since the beginning of the epidemic, Teyit also referred to the map of the John Hopkins University. It is possible to reach metadata of the system through its website. Accordingly, the points in the map show the geographical center of the countries, not a certain address, building, city or state.
The marking system of the map is made in two ways: Regional marking is applied to the federal countries such as China, the USA, Canada, and Australia. The marking for unitary countries is made by the central point showing the whole country.
The geographical coordinates of Turkey lie at N36°42', E26°45', on which the geographical center is based to determine. The coordinates of the geographical center of Turkey is N 39°00′00″ E 35°00′00″.
When we search for this location on Google Maps, the point marked in the map is a location near Kayseri.
In the future, if any city is reported to have a case, John Hopkins will mark the exact middle of that city, not the hospital or the place where the disease originated.
The data used in John Hopkins map is being obtained by the World Health Organization (WHO), the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the European Centers for Disease Control (ECDC), the National Hurricane Center (NHC), China Digital Health Service (DXY), and local media reports.
Active cases shown on the map are calculated by subtracting the total number of confirmed heals and the total number of deaths. Since the number of confirmed cases also includes possible positive cases, more numbers may appear on the WHO map.
After the statement of the first Covid-19 case in Turkey by Fahreddin Koca, the Minister of Health, the images of the ambulance with Kayseri plate were seen on live on NTV. However, this image dates to 5 March 2020. According to the news of Haberler.com, Hürriyet, and Milliyet, someone with coughing and respiratory distress was taken to hospital. But the patient didn’t have the Covid-19. The image in the news is the same as the photos in the claim.
Ali Ramazan Benli, the provincial health director of Kayseri, made a statement on his Facebook and Instagram account that there was not any case in Kayseri. Teyit talked to the Provincial Health Directorate of Kayseri and the person we talked confirmed the statement of the director and highlighted that there had not been any case in Kayseri on 11 March 2020.
In conclusion, the claim that the John Hopkins map shows that the first Covid-19 case in Turkey is in Kayseri is not true. The map shows the geographical centers of the unitary countries. Also, the photo of the ambulance dates to 5 March 2020. The post in question is an example of a false connection.