Social media posts react to report on Pentagon anti-vaccine campaign against China

Social media posts in both English and Spanish reacted to Reuters’s report about a clandestine Pentagon anti-vaccine campaign to discredit China’s Sinovac COVID-19 vaccine. Posts shared quotes and parts of the report while criticizing the Pentagon’s actions, especially its role in undermining broader public health efforts in the countries it targeted in Southeast Asia and the Middle East.

Recommendation: Conversations about China’s Sinovac COVID-19 vaccine are unlikely to arise in a clinical setting. However, trending conversations about anti-vaccine messages may undermine patients’ trust in the COVID-19 vaccines that are available in the U.S. Messaging may emphasize that COVID-19 vaccines have been rigorously tested and determined to be safe, as adverse effects are extremely rare, and they prevent severe illness, hospitalization, long COVID, and death. If responding to patient concerns about the Sinovac vaccine, messaging may emphasize that this vaccine has never been distributed in the U.S., and even though Chinese COVID-19 vaccines like Sinovac were found to be less effective than their U.S. counterparts, they were approved and deemed safe by the World Health Organization and administered in many countries around the world. The CDC recommends COVID-19 vaccines for everyone 6 months and older.