The COVID/5G conspiracy theory has been around since the early days of the pandemic. How did such an out-there idea become so widely known? The dumpster fire that is social media has a fair bit to do with it, with a combination of misinformation (wrong information spread without manipulative/deceptive intent) and disinformation (intentionally spreading wrong… Continue reading The Bizarre Spread of the COVID/5G Conspiracy Theory
COVID-19 cases are up, the delta variant is plowing through the unvaccinated population, and people are dying. It's scary times, but how scary is it for those who are vaccinated? Some general background Let's talk a bit about variants and vaccines more generally before we dive into the delta variant and the COVID vaccines. What… Continue reading Vaccines, the Unvaccinated, and the Delta Variant of COVID-19
Ever since COVID-19 swept across the planet earlier this year, the race has been on to develop a vaccine. Now there are two vaccines that are just about ready to go, but there seems to be quite a bit of reluctance when it comes to the prospect of actually getting it. So let's talk about… Continue reading COVID-19 and Vaccine Hesitancy
While COVID-19 is caused by a novel coronavirus, and there's still much to be learned about the virus and the illness, coming up with a vaccine doesn't mean totally reinventing the wheel. How vaccines work is based on knowledge about how the immune system works, and the immune system doesn't abruptly change just because a… Continue reading How Vaccines Work (and What That Means for COVID-19)
With the anti-vax movement picking up more steam than it ever deserved to have, kids are being put at risk from serious preventable illness. Unfortunately, the anti-vaxxers aren't just putting their own kids at risk, they're increasing the risk for other kids as well. Herd immunity refers to the extra protection that comes from vaccinating… Continue reading The Science Corner: Herd Immunity
Hi Eun Jung and Heung Kyu Lee, CC BY 4.0 via Wikimedia Commons It's flu vaccine time of the year again. Whether you choose to get the vaccine or not, is that choice based on accurate scientific information? While there may not be one "right" choice, making a choice based on myths is a mistake.… Continue reading Can the Flu Vaccine Give You the Flu?
Chances are, you've heard the idea that vaccines can cause autism. This notion is championed by various organizations and individuals; one of the most prominent is actress Jenny McCarthy, whose son was diagnosed with autism at age 2. She has an autism-related organization called Generation Rescue, and on its website is a guide to vaccine safety.… Continue reading Vaccines & Autism: The Link That Doesn’t Exist