The Claim and Our Verdict
- A video was shared on Facebook on May 3, 2021, claiming it shows a vaccine injection failure in the country with the highest daily confirmed COVID-19 cases, i.e., India.
- According to relevant news reports and official statements, this video actually shows a failed vaccine injection in Ecuador, not India. Although the health worker did not inject the vaccine dose into the man’s arm, the latter eventually got vaccinated and the health worker was placed under investigation. Therefore, we rate the claim as FALSE.
The Facebook post was published on May 3, 2021. The 29-second video shows a health worker pricking a man’s arm with a syringe and then removing the needle without injecting the vaccine dose. The caption of the post translates into English as: Unbelievable; a health worker is involved in a vaccine injection scam; the vaccine dose is not administered to the receiver; this could explain why the country which is the world’s largest vaccine manufacturer recorded the largest daily number of COVID-19 cases.
According to WHO, India recorded 2,646,526 COVID-19 cases with a daily record of approx. 378,000, 6.3 times the number of daily average cases of Brazil, the second largest in the world. Therefore, we can infer that the post indicates the vaccination attempt failure happened in India.
As of the issuance of this report, the post had received 28 “mood responses” and 5 comments.
The keyframe is generated through InVID, an online platform to detect, authenticate and check the reliability and accuracy of videos. Image searches on Google found the news article published by Vistazo, an Ecuadorian digital magazine, on Apr. 25, 2021 and another news article published by El Universo, one of the largest daily newspapers in Ecuador.
An image comparison shows that the person pictured in the two news articles mentioned above and the one in the misleading video are identical. A tweet published by Jorge Wated Reshuan, the Secretary General of the Cabinet Office of the President of Ecuador, says, “This man in red is 55 years old and fraudulently passed the queue to get vaccinated, the nurse didn’t vaccinate him at first, as seen in the video, but finally he was vaccinated. The @FiscaliaEcuador should investigate this case further.” This tweet has also been quoted by the news articles mentioned above. On Apr. 25, Ecuador Ministry of Health also issued a statement on this incident and emphasized that the health worker has been detained and will be investigated by relevant authorities.
Radio Sonorama, an Ecuadorian radio station, posted a tweet on Apr. 26. This tweet is translated as, “A senior citizen did not receive the vaccine at the Mucho Lote vaccination centre in Guayaquil. The nurse only pricked the arm but did not inject the dose. The Minister of Health said they have already identified the health worker and will take further action.” The video enclosed in this tweet is the same as the one in the misleading claim.
Therefore, we rate the claim as FALSE.
- Facebook post, May 3, 2021.
- World Health Organisation, Coronavirus Dashboard.
- InVID verification plugin.
- Revista Vistazo, “Health workers detained for investigation into alleged vaccination error (Médico y paciente son detenidos para investigación por presunta irregularidad en vacunación”, April 25, 2021.
- El Universo, “Nurse and patient investigated for vaccination incident in Mucho Lote (Investigan a enfermero y paciente por incidente durante vacunación en Mucho Lote),” April 25, 2021.
- Jorge Wated Reshuan, Secretary General of the Cabinet Office of the President of Ecuador, tweet, April 26, 2021.
- Ecuador Ministry of Health, statement, April 25, 2021.
- Radio Sonorama, tweet, April 26, 2021.