FAKE: Pfizer is testing vaccines on Ukrainian children, already 40 children have died

FAKE: Pfizer is testing vaccines on Ukrainian children, already 40 children have died

16 February 2024
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Verification within Meta’s Third-Party Fact-Checking Program

Information is being spread online claiming that the company Pfizer, together with the Ukrainian government, is conducting experiments on Ukrainian children. Allegedly, this was revealed by an employee of the Kyiv office of Pfizer on her TikTok page. According to her, a vaccine has been developed in Germany and is being tested on Ukrainians under the guise of flu shots. More than 40 children have already died from it. The trials are being conducted with gross violations of ethical and medical norms.

However, it is a fake. Currently, no clinical trials are being conducted at the Kyiv branch of Pfizer.

Screenshot of the post

The video with the information is posted on a private channel on TikTok, so it’s impossible to view it. However, the recording of Anna Sakhno’s story can be found on YouTube. It was uploaded there by an anonymous user registered on the network in early February 2024. This is his first and only video. The anonymity and lack of other content may indicate that the account is fake and specifically created to spread false information.

The alleged appeal of a “Pfizer employee from Ukraine” is also being spread in the English-speaking segment. One of the sources is the article from the “Chicago Chronicle” publication. However, this resource is also fake, as indicated by the following:

  • low level of site content. For instance, on the site, one can see news categories such as “world,” “business,” “politics,” “science,” “health,” and “opinions,” but publications are present only under three of them: “business,” “politics,” and “health” — the rest of the categories are empty, with no news published. Moreover, the site supposedly exists since 2021. Furthermore, the first news articles started being published on it only 2 weeks ago.
  • lack of information about the purpose and activities of the publication. While the standard “About Us” section for informational websites is present, it is written in Latin. The translation of the description shows that it’s a set of unrelated sentences. All the links at the bottom of the page, which should provide additional information, are inactive.
  • use of a well-known name. The Chicago Chronicle is a well-known local newspaper in Chicago. However, it was published from 1895 to 1907.

Furthermore, the use of the outdated Pfizer logo also indicates the falseness of the study. It would have used the organization’s new logo introduced in 2021 if it were a genuine publication. Currently, no clinical trials are being conducted based on the Kyiv representation of Pfizer. According to the data from the State Expert Center of the Ministry of Health of Ukraine, no company in Ukraine is testing vaccines for flu prevention.

Comparison of the old and new Pfizer logos. Source: Logo Design Magazine

Influenza is a highly contagious viral disease that can lead to complications and even death. The best prevention method for the flu is annual vaccination. Young children (up to 5 years old) belong to the high-risk group for whom the flu poses the greatest danger. Therefore, vaccination at this age is the most active. As of the end of January 2024, more than 1,500 children aged 6 months to 9 years received preventive flu vaccination.

The vaccine is administered if an adult or child aged 6 months and older does not have contraindications to vaccination and protects throughout one flu season (from October to May). Immunity is formed within 7-14 days. If a child under 9 years old has not been vaccinated and has not had the flu, two doses of the vaccine are required with an interval of one month. For everyone else, one dose is sufficient. 

Flu vaccination is voluntary and is not included in the Vaccination Schedule. According to the recommendations of the World Health Organization for maximum protection against viruses expected to circulate during this season, the composition of vaccines is updated annually. Therefore, vaccination is recommended every year before the start of the flu season.

The Ministry of Health of Ukraine reminds that flu vaccines can be purchased at a pharmacy and administered after consulting with your pediatrician or family doctor. You can also get vaccinated at a private clinic that has the vaccines you need.

Attention

The authors do not work for, consult to, own shares in or receive funding from any company or organization that would benefit from this article, and have no relevant affiliations