A letterbox drop spreading 'alternate' information regarding COVID-19 across Kelso has been criticised for needlessly attempting to confuse the narrative around getting on top of the pandemic.
Various houses across the Kelso area were hit by pamphlets on Monday in an apparent deliberate attempt to convince members of the community they're not hearing the full story around COVID-19.
Kelso resident Hans Stroeve, whose residence was one of a number hit by 'alternate facts', said he was infuriated to find the pamphlet in his letterbox.
"Pamphlets like this are full of dodgy websites that can't be trusted; they're either amateurish or peer-to-peer sites with quite fixed agendas," Mr Stroeve said.
"They cherry-pick some data but ignore the mountain of contrary evidence to confirm their own bias."
For example, the pamphlet references the Department of Health's Therapeutic Goods Association [TGA] to state COVID-19 vaccines have caused 355 deaths and 36,387 adverse effects as of July 8.
What it doesn't say, however, is the TGA's statement that "the most common adverse effects reported following immunisation are predictable and have been observed with many vaccines," and that "adverse events reported are often not caused by the vaccine itself."
While a self-confessed critic of certain government policies, Mr Stroeve feels the spread of alternative information undermines the trusted knowledge and expertise of health professionals.
"What infuriates me most is they don't even have enough courage in their convictions to include their contact details," Mr Stroeve said.
"I've been in education long enough to know I can't just do a bit of online searching- I won't call that research- and understand all the complexities of COVID or vaccination."
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"But if I was hospitalised for knee surgery, I'd be trusting the advice of health experts and put myself in their hands.
"That's not being a 'sheep', rather recognition that I don't have the required expertise, and I won't Google how to operate on a knee and then try to tell them their business."
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