38% of US adults believe government is faking COVID-19 death toll

A man walks through "In America: Remember," a public art installation commemorating all the Americans who have died due to COVID-19, on the National Mall September 21, 2021, in Washington, DC.

Enlarge / A man walks through “In America: Remember,” a public art installation commemorating all the Americans who have died due to COVID-19, on the National Mall September 21, 2021, in Washington, DC. (credit: Getty Images / Drew Angerer)

From the very beginning, misinformation has plagued the global response to the COVID-19 pandemic, undermining efforts to stop the spread of the disease and save lives. New survey data from the Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF) spotlights just how monstrous the problem of misinformation is.

Among a nationally representative sample of US adults, 78 percent reported that they had heard at least one of eight common COVID-19 falsehoods and either said the falsehood is true or said they’re not sure if it’s true or false.

The most common falsehood that people marked as true was that “the government is exaggerating the number of COVID-19 deaths.” Thirty-eight percent of respondents said they had heard this falsehood and that it is true. An additional 22 percent said they had heard it but weren’t sure if it is true or false.

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