Social media posts raise concerns about cancer in COVID-19 vaccines

Several popular posts have raised concerns regarding COVID-19 vaccines and cancer. One post promoted claims from a genomics scientist and his discovery of what he believes to be contamination in vials of COVID-19 vaccines. In a similar vein, a circulating article promoted concerns about SV40 and stated that COVID-19 vaccines suppress the immune response to cancer. Other viral posts have come from a Yale doctor who suggested a link between vaccines and colon cancer in young people and another doctor who claimed that vaccines are changing the way cancer behaves in young people.
Risk level: High

Recommendation: Social media posts sharing false claims about contamination and adverse reactions may deter patients from getting the updated COVID-19 vaccine this fall. This may result in negative health outcomes. Talking points may emphasize that COVID-19 vaccines have been rigorously tested and monitored over three years, that there is no evidence to indicate that SV40 is present in the COVID-19 vaccine, and that there is no established link between COVID-19 vaccines and cancer.