A recent video clip posted by a popular conservative news personality repeats the debunked claim that COVID-19 vaccines have killed 17 million people. The full video has over 100,000 engagements and clips promoting the false deaths claim are circulating on social media in English and Spanish.
Risk level: Medium
Recommendation: These types of claims may discourage patients from getting the updated COVID-19 vaccine during the current surge in COVID-19 cases. The large platforms of those spreading these claims elevate the risk. Talking points may emphasize that higher vaccination rates do not correspond to higher excess deaths. The false claim that COVID-19 vaccines have killed 17 million people is based on a non-peer reviewed report that concludes that excess deaths after the COVID-19 vaccine rollout were vaccine-related when they are almost certainly COVID-19 deaths. COVID-19 vaccines have been rigorously tested and have been determined to be safe. The benefits of vaccination outweigh any potential risks, because staying up to date on COVID-19 vaccines helps to prevent severe illness, death, and long COVID.