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Coronavirus

Don’t fall for this new viral video making false claims about COVID-19

It’s hard to believe that we even need to say this but no, drinking bleach does not cure COVID-19. An unreliable company that we recently told you about was actually peddling a “miracle cure” that is an alleged cure-all tonic for a variety of ailments.

Not only does this toxic concoction known as the “Miracle Mineral Solution” not cure you, but it may kill you. Tap or click here to find out more about this scam tonic.

When it comes to a global pandemic like we’re dealing with now, it’s best to stick with trusted medical agencies and known scientists for medical advice. If you don’t, you may find yourself caught up in a cloud of misinformation. That’s exactly what happened this week after a video packed with what’s been deemed false information spread like wildfire on social media.

These are not the doctors you’re looking for

If you spend any time on social media you’ve probably already heard about the ruckus caused by a video dealing with COVID-19 this week. The video was originally published by “Breitbart News” and quickly spread through sites like Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

In the video you see a group of people wearing white lab coats who go on to call themselves “America’s Frontline Doctors.” This is a seemingly small number of physicians, including some who are part of the anti-vaccination movement, that formed the group and rolled out a website less than two weeks ago. The website has since “expired.”

RELATED: Real-time COVID map calculates the risk where you live

The video was shot in front of the U.S. Supreme Court in Washington, D.C. The doctors made a couple of claims about COVID-19 that have already been debunked by trustworthy agencies like the CDC and FDA, along with a whole host of medical professionals around the country and world.

First, they said that “The virus has a cure, it’s called hydroxychloroquine, zinc and Zithromax.” The FDA announced in early July that people infected with COVID-19 should not be using hydroxychloroquine because it has no positive effects on patients and could actually cause heart rhythm problems.

But, these doctors didn’t stop there. They went on to say you don’t need to wear a mask because the previously mentioned concoction is a cure for COVID-19.

How did this fake news video go viral?

Videos don’t go viral online without help and this one is no exception. According to data analytics firm Crowdtangle, the video was shared nearly 600,000 times Monday night.

Even worse, it was shared by some very high profile people. Donald Trump Jr. posted a version of the video on Twitter and actually had his account suspended for 12 hours for sharing misleading information.

Twitter isn’t the only social media site the video made the rounds on. It ended up being viewed more than 14 million times just on Facebook.

RELATED: The one reason you shouldn’t turn to YouTube for your health concerns

YouTube has taken down the video and it’s been removed from both Facebook and Twitter as well, although some variations continue to spread through other parts of social media.

A Facebook spokesperson told CBS News and other outlets, “We’ve removed this video for sharing false information about cures and treatments for COVID-19” and it’s “showing messages in News Feed to people who have reacted to, commented on or shared harmful COVID-19-related misinformation that we have removed, connecting them to myths debunked by the WHO.”

This isn’t the first time fake news has spread through social media sites and it won’t be the last. That’s why it’s important to know where to find accurate news, especially when it comes to a pandemic like a coronavirus.

There are some social media accounts out there that are passing along helpful COVID-19-related news that you can trust. Agencies like the CDC and WHO have been helpful resources since this all began. Tap or click here for a list of trustworthy social media accounts that are safe to follow.

The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as health or medical advice. Always consult a physician or other qualified health provider regarding any questions you may have regarding a medical condition, advice, or health objectives.

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