U.S. surgeon Vivek Mersey on Thursday called on the nation to work hard to combat misinformation about COVID-19 and vaccines, urging technology companies, healthcare workers, journalists, and ordinary Americans to take more measures to address “let us give our lives The issue of “cost”.
in a 22 page consultationAs President Joe Biden’s first surgeon, Murti wrote that false statements caused people to refuse vaccinations and public health advice on masks and social distancing, thereby undermining efforts to end the coronavirus pandemic and making Life is in danger.
Warning follows COVID-19 vaccination Growth across the United States has slowed, in part due to vaccine opposition due to unsubstantiated claims about the safety of immunity and the recent death toll in the United States Pass 600,000.
“Today, we live in a world where misinformation poses an imminent potential threat to the health of our country,” Morty said at a press conference.
“During the COVID-19 pandemic, misinformation caused people to resist wearing masks in high-risk environments, which led them to reject validated treatments and choose not to be vaccinated,” he said.
“Simply put: health information cost us our lives.”
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki told reporters on Thursday that the Biden administration has stepped up tracking of misinformation and is flagging problematic social media posts to Facebook.
“About 12 people created 65% of anti-vaccine misinformation on social media platforms,” Psaki said. “All of them remain active on Facebook, although some are even banned on other platforms, including platforms owned by Facebook.”
Even before the Internet and social media allowed dangerous statements to spread faster and easier than ever before, health misinformation was a global problem. The problem of COVID-19 misinformation is so serious that the World Health Organization regards it as an “information epidemic.”
Considering the role of the Internet in disseminating health misinformation, Murthy stated that technology companies and social media platforms should make meaningful changes to their products and software to reduce the spread of misinformation and increase access to authoritative sources based on facts.
He said that teachers should expand the education of media literacy and critical thinking. He suggested that journalists should strive to expose health misinformation in a responsible manner and not spread it further unintentionally. He suggested that public health officials and doctors should better answer questions and explain why public health guidelines sometimes change based on new information.
As for everyday Americans, Mersey urges them to verify questionable health information through trusted sources such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and use critical thinking when encountering unverified statements. He said that if your relatives or friends believe or spread misinformation, it is better to participate by listening and asking questions rather than facing them.
Although some groups that disseminate health misinformation are for profit, Murthy writes that many Americans may be spreading false information and inadvertently cause harm.
“If you are not sure, don’t share,” he said.
Recent public opinion polls show that the hesitation on vaccines is in line with partisanship.recent Polls A survey conducted by the Washington Post and ABC News found that 86% of Democrats had received at least one vaccine, compared with 45% of Republicans.
Marjorie Taylor Green, an outspoken Republican congressman from Georgia and a staunch supporter of former President Donald Trump, tweeted a message on Sunday urging people not to get COVID-19, saying it has ” Very serious life-changing vaccine side effects”. Green has more than 400,000 fans on social media platforms.
In response, Senate Minority Leader, Republican, and polio survivor Mitch McConnell urged more Americans to be vaccinated.
McConnell told reporters at a press conference on Tuesday: “We need to complete this work, and part of it is just to convince the American people of the importance of doing so.”
“Everyone who understands the subject says that if you get the disease again, your chances are very good, and if you get vaccinated, you won’t die from it,” he said. “So I don’t know how many times we have to say it, but for myself, I intend to repeat it over and over again.”