The Infodemic: World Doctors Alliance Spreads Misinformation About COVID-19
October 26, 2020 4:59 PM
Fake news about the coronavirus can do real harm. Polygraph.info is spotlighting fact-checks from other reliable sources here.
Claim: “COVID-19 is a type of flu and is not a pandemic; PCR tests are up to 94% false positive; only 98 COVID-19 related deaths have been reported in Ireland.” — World Doctors Alliance video
Read the full story at: Health Feedback
Social Media Disinfo
Circulating on social media: “Viral posts suggest that COVID-19 can’t be a serious disease if it hasn’t “wiped out the homeless.” But recent reports published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have found high rates of homeless residents testing positive for the novel coronavirus, known as SARS-CoV-2.”
Read the full story at: FactCheck.org
‘World Doctors Alliance’ video promoting COVID conspiracies viral again
A video of a group of panellists claiming that the world is not facing a coronavirus pandemic is widespread on social media platforms. “WHO has completely taken a U-turn and now says that Corona patient neither needs to be isolated, nor quarantined, nor needs social Distancing, and it cannot even transmit from one patient to another [sic],” reads the accompanying claim viral with the video.
Reuters Fact Check
July 23, 202111:24 PM Updated 3 months ago
Fact Check-No evidence that 87,000 Dutch nurses have refused a COVID-19 vaccine
Claims online that 87,000 nurses in the Netherlands have refused a COVID-19 vaccine are baseless – and have been drawn from a video containing misinformation that was released before any vaccines were rolled out.
Hundreds of social media users have shared a screenshot of the claim made on an amateur blogsite in June (here and here). It reads: “87,000 Dutch doctors and nurses refuse to be vaccinated” (archive.is/NqaiR).
The blog itself links to a video published in October 2020, four months before the Netherlands began its vaccination rollout (here), in which a Dutch woman makes several claims about COVID-19.
She begins by saying the disease is a “normal flu virus” – a claim previously debunked by Reuters (here) – before saying she is in contact with “87,000 nurses that do not want the vaccine that is being prepared for us”.
“They are not willing to be the guinea pig,” she adds, without providing evidence for her assertions.
Reuters could find no public record suggesting 87,000 nurses in the Netherlands were planning to refuse a COVID-19 vaccine – nor a record of 87,000 having done so.
The screenshots say the Dutch woman is a member of the World Doctors Alliance, a group of doctors and activists. The World Doctors Alliance did not respond to a request for comment from Reuters.
According to a Dutch government website, there were around 207,000 registered nurses in the Netherlands as of July 1 (here), meaning 87,000 is around 42% of the total.
It is difficult to compare this percentage with data from the Dutch health ministry due to the nature of the vaccine rollout, a spokesperson told Reuters, while adding that uptake among healthcare workers had been high.
The first people to be vaccinated in the Netherlands, starting Jan. 6, were frontline healthcare workers in acute care, such as doctors, intensive care unit (ICU) staff and ambulance workers (here).
This initial cohort were vaccinated “in and by their respective workplaces,” the spokesperson said, adding this group was “highly motivated to get vaccinated”. The spokesperson estimated that more than 90% had been inoculated to date.
Following this, the GGD (municipal health services) invited approximately 700,000 people working in healthcare branches for vaccination. This included nurses working in non-critical care units, care home workers and hospital cleaning staff.
The spokesperson told Reuters that 70% to 80% of this group responded directly to the invitation and had received two shots.
False. There is no evidence that 87,000 nurses have refused a COVID-19 vaccine in the Netherlands; rather, a Dutch health ministry spokesperson said uptake had been high across health professionals.
This article was produced by the Reuters Fact Check team. Read more about our fact-checking work here .
Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
Video Riddled With COVID-19 Misinformation is Not By WHO Doctors
Neither are the individuals seen in the video WHO doctors and nor are the claims made by them true.
Published: 26 Oct 2020, 3:51 PM IST
Social media is abuzz with a video of doctors claiming that “COVID-19 is a normal flu virus” and the world is no longer dealing with a pandemic. In a 4-minute-long viral clip the doctors make several unsubstantiated claims which is now being circulated by users claiming that these are WHO doctors who have taken a complete “U-turn” on their finding about the novel coronavirus.
However, we found that the doctors seen in the video are not affiliated with the World Health Organisation (WHO). They are a group of healthcare professionals who call themselves the World Doctors Alliance and the claims made by them in the video are false and misleading.