Numerous studies have found that additional COVID-19 shots are generally associated with extra protection against the coronavirus. Many people on social media, however, have shared a preliminary finding from a Cleveland Clinic study and misrepresented it as proving that getting more doses increases a person’s risk of infection.
An unclear tweet from New York City health officials was meant to caution residents that the latest omicron subvariant, XBB.1.5, might be more likely than previous variants to infect vaccinated or previously infected people. Social media posts misinterpreted the tweet to mean that vaccinated people were at higher risk than unvaccinated people.
Those who are not vaccinated against COVID-19 are more prone to serious illness and are dying at higher rates than those who are vaccinated. But partisan social media accounts, including a post by a member of former President Donald Trump’s campaign legal team, continue to misleadingly suggest the vaccines are unnecessary and discourage their use.
NBA star Bradley Beal made some misleading comments — shared in viral video clips — about the effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccines. No vaccine is 100% effective, but clinical trials and studies show the COVID-19 vaccines are very effective at preventing illness, particularly serious illness, including for those previously infected, such as Beal.
An Instagram post highlighted a headline about a non-peer-reviewed study from Israel that found that unvaccinated people previously infected with SARS-CoV-2 had greater immunity against the delta variant than never-infected people fully vaccinated with Pfizer/BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine. But the social media post omitted the study’s other finding that one dose of the vaccine enhanced protection for infection survivors.
Florida health officials have reported a 60% rise in COVID-19 cases, and hospitals are reporting that 95% of COVID-19 patients are not fully vaccinated. But a Facebook post makes the baseless claims that Florida’s numbers are not going up, and that all COVID-19 patients recently admitted to a Palm Beach County hospital had been vaccinated.