Victims of COVID-19 vaccine misinformation?

A new study finds that people suffering from depression may be more susceptible to falling prey to falsehood regarding COVID-19 vaccines

author_img Anu Jain Rohatgi Published :  14th February 2022 07:38 PM   |   Published :   |  14th February 2022 07:38 PM
Representational Image. COVID-19 vaccine

Representational Image

Name of study: People suffering from depression may be more susceptible to falling prey to falsehood regarding COVID-19 vaccines By who and where: University of Colorado, Anschutz Medical Campus, USA

What does it say?
✥ Depressed people are more venerable to believing misinformation related to COVID-19. Because of this condition, some believe that the Covid vaccine has several ill-effects or side-effects. 
✥  It was also found that those who suffer from depression tend to dwell on negative information rather than positive news. 
✥  To some of them, the world appears like a dark and dangerous place, and therefore, they’re inclined 
towards thinking irrationally.

For

Clear connection 

Dr. Pallavi Arvind Joshi Consultant, Psychiatrist, Manipal Hospital, Bengaluru

There may be cognitive distortions in some people with depression. They may do what’s called ‘selective abstraction’, which is taking one thing from the bulk of information and believing it to be the complete story. These people could over-generalise, for instance, the rare side effects of vaccine and complications associated with it. They could also maximise problems faced by vaccinated people and minimise its positive effects. This happens due to the chemical changes in brain, which suppress the practical area of the brain—the prefrontal cortex.

Against

Do not generalise 

Dr. Ashwani Kumar Senior Consultant, Psychiatry, Max Hospital Gurugram

There is nothing to support the claim that all depressed people assume the worst. In fact, those suffering from depression have done their bit in the fight against COVID. They came forward and got vaccinated at the earliest. It is true that some people suffering from depression may catastrophise and think of the vaccine as useless, but then there are also those who don’t suffer from depression and still fall prey to rumour mongering and spreading misinformation regarding COVID, its medication and, vaccines. 

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