Media partially stoked COVID-19 vax misinformation: Australian study

The University of Western Australia researchers say doctors can help prevent the spread of rumours by clarifying stories lacking rigour

Exaggerated media reporting during the initial months of the COVID-19 vaccine rollout stoked the global spread of rumours about alleged adverse events, a study has found.

Traditional journalists remain crucial in fact checking to prevent the spread of rumours, but health professionals also have a role by promoting their perspectives when they believe a story about adverse events needs clarifying, the authors say.

The University of Western Australia research used Google trends data and social media activity monitoring tools to