Home / Post
COVID-19 cross-platform vaccines

Claims about a Canadian girl having a life-threatening vaccine reaction are false

A video testimonial recounting a thirdhand story about a 13-year-old girl’s heart stopping after receiving a COVID-19 vaccine is baseless. The woman in the video provides no evidence or specifics to support her claim and makes other demonstrably false claims about the vaccines. Let’s take a look at the facts.

A 13- year-old girl in Halifax, Nova Scotia, did not have a serious cardiac emergency after receiving a COVID-19 vaccine.
An unnamed woman posted a video to Facebook claiming that her daughter’s friend had this kind of reaction.
The woman made other demonstrably false claims about vaccines in the same video.
Emergency health authorities in Nova Scotia have no record of such an incident.

Here is a full copy of the video:

NewsLit takeaway

Misinformation often provokes strong emotional reactions that can override our rational sensibilities. If you have a strong emotional reaction to something you see online — particularly if it involves evidence-free claims about an important topic such as vaccines or other health-related concerns — take some extra time to check it out before reacting to it. This example also highlights the challenging, cross-platform nature of misinformation: Though this video was removed by Facebook, where it was originally posted, it continued to circulate on platforms like Instagram and TikTok, where it was reposted.

NLP’s viral rumor rundown is a regular feature in The Sift, its weekly email newsletter for educators, and in Get Smart About News, its weekly email newsletter for the general public. You can subscribe to these newsletters here. Send suggestions, questions or feedback on this rumor or on the viral rumor rundown blog to thesift@newslit.org.