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06th Oct 2020

Facebook removed a Trump post claiming flu is worse than COVID-19

Facebook removed a Trump post falsely claiming that seasonal flu is deadlier than Covid-19. It's the second time in two months he's had a post deleted

Alex Roberts

For the second time in two months, a Trump post has been taken down by the social media giant

Facebook removed a Trump post falsely claiming that seasonal flu is deadlier than Covid-19.

President Trump is now back at the White House after testing positive for coronavirus last week. He spent three days in hospital and was then discharged.

Trump courted controversy when it was revealed he attended rallies and meetings in Minnesota and New Jersey in the two days following his Covid-19 diagnosis.

President Trump removes his mask after returning to the White House from hospital. Trump spent three days hospitalised with coronavirus. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)

A spokesperson for Facebook confirmed that Trump’s post was taken down from its platform for spreading Covid-19 misinformation.

The post read: “Flu season is coming up! Many people every year, sometimes over 100,000, and despite the Vaccine, die from the Flu.

“Are we going to close down our Country? No, we have learned to live with it, just like we are learning to live with Covid, in most populations far less lethal!!!”

Andy Stone, policy communications manager at Facebook said: “We remove incorrect information about the severity of Covid-19, and have now removed this post.”

Trump’s rant was also posted on Twitter. While it hasn’t been removed by Twitter, they have issued a warning for anyone that sees it.

In America, some 210,000 people have died from coronavirus.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) say the combined death toll from the past five flu seasons is less than the number of people who have succumbed to Covid-19.

This data is also in keeping with evidence produced by the World Health Organisation (WHO). They say:

“While many people globally have built up immunity to seasonal flu strains, Covid-19 is a new virus to which no one has immunity. That means more people are susceptible to infection, and some will suffer severe disease.

“Globally, about 3.4% of reported Covid-19 cases have died. By comparison, seasonal flu generally kills far fewer than 1% of those infected.”

Back in August, Facebook removed a Trump post claiming children are immune’ to coronavirus.

Trump made this comment in an interview with Fox News. He later repeated the statement at a press conference. A cutdown of the Fox News interview containing the comment was then published on Trump’s social media channels.