Dr. Robert Calif blamed misinformation on the Internet for America’s declining life expectancy
Online misinformation is to blame for America’s dwindling life expectancy, claims the head of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
Dr. Robert Califf, who held the position under both Obama and Biden, said the US is now in “last place” compared to peers such as the UK, Japan and Italy.
Cultivating snake oil sellers of mistrust in health care has always been a problem, he said, but it has only gotten worse in the age of the Internet and social media.
But his response ignores the spike in gun crime and drug overdose deaths that have plagued America since the Covid pandemic hit in 2020.
A record 107,000 Americans will die of a drug overdose in 2021, with the synthetic opioid fentanyl at the center of 70 percent of them. Last week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) revealed results that gun homicides jumped 35 percent during the first two years of Covid.
Life expectancy in America has fallen from 79 years in 2019 to 77 years now. The US Food and Drug Administration blamed online misinformation for the decline
The graph shows how each of the G7 countries performed in the world rankings for life expectancy from 1950 to 2020. While Japan rose from 45th to 3rd, the UK dropped from 10th to 36th and the US fell from 3rd. Ranked 13th to 53rd.
America now has the lowest life expectancy among the G7 nations, and falls just outside the top 50 globally.
The average American can expect to live about 77 years, while people in the UK live for an average of 80 years. The average life of a Japanese person is 84 years.
Staggering data shows that 1 in 25 five-year-olds in America will not see their 40th birthday.
These premature deaths are believed to be fueled by guns and drugs, as young people typically avoid the more common causes of death such as heart disease or cancer.
Young deaths have helped fuel a decline in life expectancy in the United States, which had held at 79 before the virus hit.
But talk to CNBC This week, Dr. Kalev blamed misinformation online.
“We are basically in last place and losing ground by three to five years compared to the average of other high-income countries,” he said.
This is not uniformly distributed, we have what I call the spreads that we’ve known for a long time.
(But) the big new mode that we’re really seeing emerging in a major way is the rural mode. People in rural areas fare much worse in terms of health.
Asked about the reason behind the decline in life expectancy, Pelagia said: “Why don’t we use knowledge about diet? It’s not that people don’t know about it.
Why don’t we use medicinal products as effectively and efficiently as our counterpart countries?
“A lot of it has to do with the choices people make because of the things that influence their thinking.”
Dr. Kalev warned that misinformation on the Internet could “mislead” many into avoiding clinically approved treatments that improve their health.
He said this was evident in Covid vaccines – with about 50 million American adults yet to get their first two doses.
The rate of vaccination for other diseases has also declined in recent years, with 40 million children missing out on measles vaccinations last year and the rate of routine vaccination among kindergartens dropping to its lowest level in 10 years.
Covid vaccines and antivirals give us an easy way to talk about it, but this is not limited to those areas.
In heart disease, many people do not take their medication even though it is now very generic and very low cost.
(They are) often tricked into taking ineffective things that are being sold online.
A map showing the change in life expectancy between 1800 and 1950 and 2015 shows the massive global divide
Misinformation about drugs has always existed, he said, but the internet has given conspiracy theorists and skeptics a megaphone.
“We can make a statement about what we’ve determined based on the highest level of evidence,” the FDA chief continued.
But in ten minutes, someone else’s thinking can be (thrown out) and reach about a billion people. There is nothing stopping them from telling people things that are not true.
Like other developed countries, America has faced skepticism about Covid vaccines during the pandemic.
But the FDA and CDC have also been accused of fueling concerns about misinformation and pushing many people to the sidelines.
Last year, the Food and Drug Administration was embroiled in a scandal over its decision to approve second bivalent boosters — or IV shots — for all adults in August, and then everyone over six months old in December.
At the time, the agency outlasted its expert panel to sign additional picks.
This isn’t the first time Dr. Kalev has pointed out misinformation online to deflect attention from declining life expectancy in the United States.
In an interview with CNN He said last May: “We know a lot about what needs to be done to prevent bad outcomes from heart disease – but somehow the trusted and honest message just doesn’t get through.
It has been showered with a lot of misinformation that leads people to make bad choices that are not good for their health.
The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has created a unit that seeks to combat misinformation circulating online and provide people with reliable facts.
He now runs short videos on YouTube and long threads on Twitter about the new drugs, posting clips exposing misinformation, such as bogus Covid cures.
She also regularly shares memes referring to Scooby-Doo and SpongeBob, urging Americans to keep up with their vaccinations.
But these clips tend to have limited access, with nearly all of the recent clips posted to the FDA’s YouTube channel failing to reach even 1,000 views.
Experts have also raised concerns that the FDA’s bad reputation is hampering its ability to combat the spread of misinformation online.
“The question I start with is, ‘Are you a reliable messenger or not? “
In the context of the Food and Drug Administration, we can highlight multiple incidents that damaged the agency’s credibility and deepened mistrust of its scientific decisions.
The numbers show that 7,000 more Americans than usual have died each week due to the adverse impact of pandemic restrictions this year
Officials say seven thousand more Americans are dying each week than usual this year even as Covid-19 fades into the background.
He notes that more people are dying as a result of the spillover effects of lockdowns, hospital closures and other restrictions introduced during the pandemic.
The CDC said it expects total annual deaths to be 13 percent higher than the 3.2 million recorded in 2019, the last normal year before COVID-19 hit.
Covid-19 — which has killed nearly 260,000 Americans this year by December 14 — is on track to be the third biggest killer this year, after heart disease and cancer.
While lockdowns and business closures are a thing of the past as the pandemic subsides, they have left an indelible mark on American society.
Heart disease deaths tend to rise along with Covid deaths — in part because the virus aggravates an underlying condition and affects your heart, increasing your risk of heart disease.