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Watch: Elisabeth Rosenthal on the COVID-19 'Infodemic' and the Media

Analysis  |  By Kaiser Health News  
   May 17, 2021

Journalists discussed the challenging environment for news and facts that grew out of the pandemic.

This article was published on Monday, May 17, 2021 in Kaiser Health News.

Jon Greenberg interviewed Elisabeth Rosenthal, editor-in-chief of KHN; Shefali Luthra, health and gender reporter at The 19th; and Derek Thompson, staff writer for The Atlantic, about COVID-19 misinformation during PolitiFact's United Facts of America: A Festival of Fact-Checking.

The journalists discussed the challenging environment for news and facts that grew out of the pandemic. One major issue was that Americans simply were not used to the idea that infectious diseases could cause mass disaster, Rosenthal said. That mentality, combined with misinformation spread by then-President Donald Trump, made it easy for lies about the virus to perpetuate. 

Kaiser Health News is a national health policy news service that is part of the nonpartisan Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation.


KEY TAKEAWAYS

One major issue was that Americans simply were not used to the idea that infectious diseases could cause mass disaster.

That mentality, combined with misinformation spread by then-President Donald Trump, made it easy for lies about the virus to perpetuate.


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