Swinney criticised for misleading Covid graphic

John Swinney has been criticised for sending out a misleading graphic about the risk from Covid on the day that restrictions are eased to Level Zero across Scotland.

The Covid Recovery Secretary tweeted an image with claims about mask protection that international fact checking websites have disputed.

The graphic claims there is a 0 per cent risk of transmitting Covid as long as you wear a mask and stand six feet apart.

It makes several other claims about the percentage risk from wearing or not wearing a face mask.

The points do not appear to be supported by evidence and the original source of the graphic is unclear.

Scottish Conservative Shadow Cabinet Secretary for Health, Annie Wells MSP, said: “John Swinney should delete this misleading graphic.

“It wrongly sends a message that there is no risk from Covid in certain circumstances and makes several claims that appear to be unfounded.

“This looks unnecessarily reckless coming from a senior SNP Government minister.

“We’ve all got a duty to call out fake news and this misleading post blurs the well-intentioned message he seems to be trying to send that wearing masks can reduce the spread of the virus.

“The Covid Recovery Secretary needs to wise up and be more careful when sending public health messages, especially on the day that restrictions are eased across Scotland.”

 

Notes

Tweet here - https://twitter.com/JohnSwinney/status/1417043757812305920

Fact checks here –

https://www.tjekdet.dk/faktatjek/viral-grafik-bruger-udokumenterede-tal-om-risikoen-ved-mundbind

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-coronavirus-mask-efficacy/partly-false-claim-wear-a-face-mask-covid-19-risk-reduced-by-up-to-98-5-idUSKCN2252T6

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