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SciCheck’s COVID-19/Vaccination Project

Idaho Doctor Makes Baseless Claims About Safety of COVID-19 Vaccines

Idaho Doctor Makes Baseless Claims About Safety of COVID-19 Vaccines

A viral video features a doctor making dubious claims about COVID-19 vaccines and treatments at a forum hosted by Idaho’s lieutenant governor. Dr. Ryan Cole claims mRNA vaccines cause cancer and autoimmune diseases, but the lead author of the paper on which Cole based that claim told us there is no evidence mRNA vaccines cause those ailments.

How were safe and effective vaccines developed so rapidly?

The unprecedented speed of the COVID-19 vaccines was due to multiple factors.
Candidates for an mRNA vaccine — the technology used for the Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna vaccines — can be quickly designed once scientists know the genetic sequence of the virus and which protein to target. Researchers already knew from past experience with SARS and MERS, which are other diseases caused by coronaviruses, that the spike protein the virus uses to enter cells was likely the right one.

Video Wrong About Fauci, COVID-19

Video Wrong About Fauci, COVID-19

A video from conservative commentator Liz Wheeler falsely claims the nation’s top infectious disease expert, Dr. Anthony Fauci, repeatedly “lied” to the American public about the COVID-19 pandemic.

Viral Posts Distort WHO Guidance on COVID-19 Tests

Viral Posts Distort WHO Guidance on COVID-19 Tests

Dubious websites and viral posts falsely claim that the World Health Organization changed COVID-19 testing protocols for political reasons following Joe Biden’s inauguration and admitted that false-positive cases had been inflating the case count. The WHO’s guidance merely reminded labs to follow instructions provided by each test’s manufacturer.

Trump Baselessly Alleges COVID-19 Vaccine Announcement Was Delayed

Trump Baselessly Alleges COVID-19 Vaccine Announcement Was Delayed

In a series of tweets, President Donald Trump claimed — without evidence — that the pharma company Pfizer and his own FDA purposely held off on releasing positive interim results about a COVID-19 vaccine candidate until after the election.