People spreading false rumours on social media 'extraordinarily callous'

On Tuesday, the HSE hit back at “distressing” social media rumours that a number of its nurses have died from the virus.
People spreading false rumours on social media 'extraordinarily callous'
Phil Ni Sheaghdha

The General Secretary of the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation has said people who spread false rumours on social media about Irish nurses dying from Covid-19 are “extraordinarily callous”.

On Tuesday, the HSE hit back at “distressing” social media rumours that a number of its nurses have died from the virus.

Phil Ni Sheaghdha told RTÉ Radio she has become aware of the rumours circulating on social media over the weekend.

“We had information over the weekend that there was a post going around on social media that four nurses had died. I find that extraordinarily callous – that is the word I would use. Nurses are on the front line and really putting themselves out there.”

Yesterday, health chiefs warned against spreading “hurtful” misinformation online, as Ireland recorded the highest total of deaths in a day since the Covid-19 crisis began.

Chief medical officer Tony Holohan warned the public against amplifying unverified stories, saying no nurses had died, despite claims on social media yesterday.

Another 17 people with the disease — four women and 13 men — have died, it was announced in yesterday’s daily update. Of the 17 deaths, eight were in the east, three in the south, three in the north-west and three in the west.

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