Talk Show Guests Attempts to Discredit COVID-19 Vaccines, Masks

Last week, a guest on a popular political talk show falsely claimed that the effectiveness of COVID vaccines is rapidly declining and suggested that masks are “simply symbolic.” These claims are based on reports of breakthrough COVID-19 infections in vaccinated people. Vaccines are not 100 percent effective, which means that some vaccinated people will still get COVID-19. These cases are rare and usually quite mild. The vaccines have been remarkably effective at preventing serious illness, hospitalization, and death: For the past few months, only a tiny percentage of the COVID-19 hospitalizations and deaths in the U.S. have been in vaccinated people.   

Efforts to discourage vaccination have only served to allow the virus to continue spreading and mutating, which could potentially result in a variant that is more effective against the vaccine. Think of the vaccine as a bulletproof vest, rather than a forcefield, against COVID-19. Masks offer another layer of protection, which is why public health officials promote vaccination along with other safety measures to control the spread of the virus.

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The Public Health Communications Collaborative (PHCC) was formed in 2020 to coordinate and amplify public health messaging on COVID-19 and increase Americans’ confidence in guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and state and local public health officials.

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