Doctors are exasperated by the persistence of false and misleading claims about the virus.

By Tiffany Hsu

Nearly three years into the pandemic, Covid-19 remains stubbornly persistent. So, too, does misinformation about the virus.

As Covid cases, hospitalizations and deaths rise in parts of the country, myths and misleading narratives continue to evolve and spread, exasperating overburdened doctors and evading content moderators.

What began in 2020 as rumors that cast doubt on the existence or seriousness of Covid quickly evolved into often outlandish claims about dangerous technology lurking in masks and the supposed miracle cures from unproven drugs, like ivermectin. Last year’s vaccine rollout fueled another wave of unfounded alarm. Now, in addition to all the claims still being bandied about, there are conspiracy theories about the long-term effects of the treatments, researchers say.

The ideas still thrive on social media platforms, and the constant barrage, now a yearslong accumulation, has made it increasingly difficult for accurate advice to break through, misinformation researchers say. That leaves people already suffering from pandemic fatigue to become further inured to Covid’s continuing dangers and susceptible to other harmful medical content.

Link to article by Tiffany Hsu in The New York Times

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