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A Project of The Annenberg Public Policy Center
SciCheck’s COVID-19/Vaccination Project

Chiropractor Again Peddles False, Misleading COVID-19 Claims

Chiropractor Again Peddles False, Misleading COVID-19 Claims

The delta variant of the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 is more transmissible than previous forms of the virus, and has helped spur an increase in cases, including in children. But a chiropractor in a Facebook video wrongly claims that “it is not showing more of a problem.” That’s one of several misleading and false claims he makes about COVID-19.

Misinformation About Face Masks

Misinformation About Face Masks

A growing body of evidence supports the use of masks to slow the spread of COVID-19. But the effectiveness of masks is now being challenged again. Here we summarize some of our work over the past 16 months, based on categories of misinformation about masking.

Indiana Doctor Piles On Bogus COVID-19 Claims in Viral Video

Indiana Doctor Piles On Bogus COVID-19 Claims in Viral Video

In a viral video, an Indiana physician baselessly claimed that the COVID-19 vaccines, which have been shown to be safe and effective, “fight the virus wrong and let the virus become worse than it would with native infection.” He also incorrectly said no vaccine prevents infection and contended that people previously infected with COVID-19 do not benefit from vaccination, despite studies that suggest otherwise.

Stories Falsely Cite ‘Stanford Study’ to Misinform on Face Masks

Stories Falsely Cite ‘Stanford Study’ to Misinform on Face Masks

Stanford Medicine says it “strongly supports the use of face masks to control the spread of COVID-19.” Yet viral stories falsely claim a “Stanford study” showed that face masks are unsafe and ineffective against COVID-19. The paper is a hypothesis, not a study, from someone with no current affiliation with Stanford. Update: The paper was retracted.

Tucker Carlson Misleads on COVID-19 Vaccines, Masks

Tucker Carlson Misleads on COVID-19 Vaccines, Masks

All of the authorized COVID-19 vaccines are effective at preventing symptomatic disease. Yet Fox News host Tucker Carlson baselessly casts doubt on the effectiveness of the vaccines, because federal officials urge fully vaccinated people to wear masks in public settings. 

Posts Distort CDC Study Supporting Mask Mandates to Reduce COVID-19

Posts Distort CDC Study Supporting Mask Mandates to Reduce COVID-19

A study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that state-issued mask mandates were associated with significant decreases in daily COVID-19 case and death growth rates. Yet some conservative outlets and social media users falsely claim the study shows mask mandates have a negligible impact on COVID-19 outcomes.

What evidence supports the use of face masks against the coronavirus?

Multiple lines of evidence back the use of face masks to limit the spread of the coronavirus.
Lab tests, for example, show that masks can partially block exhaled respiratory droplets, which are thought to be the primary way the virus spreads. Analyses of people who came into contact with those with COVID-19 have also found mask-wearing to be associated with a reduced risk of contracting the virus. Numerous studies similarly document an association between self-reported mask wearing and control of the virus in a community or the implementation of a mask mandate and a subsequent decline in COVID-19 cases.

The Evolving Science of Face Masks and COVID-19

The Evolving Science of Face Masks and COVID-19

Since the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention began recommending that members of the public mask up last spring, additional research has backed the use of face masks to combat the coronavirus, but knowledge gaps still remain. Here, we summarize the evidence.