Social media posts make unfounded claims about Washington firefighters’ deaths

A social media user with a large platform shared posts claiming that several firefighters in Washington have died from cardiac arrest since 2021. The user implies that these deaths were the result of COVID-19 vaccine mandates for firefighters and claims that vaccine mandates are “murder.” Some commenters agreed.

Risk level: High

Recommendation: Myocarditis after COVID-19 vaccination is commonly cited by vaccine opponents to discourage vaccination. While conversations about vaccine mandates are unlikely to arise in a clinical setting, doctors in Washington may face questions about the risk of developing myocarditis or experiencing cardiac arrest after receiving a COVID-19 vaccine. Messaging may emphasize that cases of post-vaccine myocarditis are extremely rare and usually mild. A COVID-19 infection is more likely to cause myocarditis than a COVID-19 vaccine, and those cases are typically more severe. Staying up to date on COVID-19 vaccines is a safe way to protect against myocarditis.