FACT CHECK: Has The WHO Director-General Not Been Vaccinated Against COVID-19?

Anna Mock | Fact Check Reporter

A video shared on Facebook purportedly shows World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus saying he has not received a COVID-19 vaccine.

Verdict: Misleading

While the clip is genuine, it was filmed over a year ago. In the full interview, Ghebreyesus explains he received his first COVID-19 vaccine shot the month before, a moment he documented on his Twitter account. 

Fact Check:

The Aug. 4 Facebook video appears to show a clip of an interview Ghebreyesus did in which he seemingly states he has not yet received a COVID-19 vaccination. The interviewer asks him when he received his first shot of the vaccine, to which Ghebreyesus replies by saying, “You know, still I feel like I know where I belong: in a poor country called Ethiopia, in a poor continent called Africa, and wanted to wait until Africa and other countries, in other regions, low-income countries, start vaccination. So I was protesting, in other words, because we’re failing.”

“Tedros not jabbed?” reads the video’s caption. “Well who’d have thought? Here you have #WHO Director General #Tedros saying he is not vaccinated… WHO is one big sham… WAKE UP! You have been played.”

Another iteration shared on Twitter shows the same video. “Tedros not jabbed? Well who’d have thought?” the tweet reads.

Tedros not jabbed? Well who’d have thought? pic.twitter.com/Cf1Vt8pQm2

— Wendy B#RejectTheReform#StopTheTreaty (@WendyB89696502) August 4, 2022

The video is missing context. The clip stems from a scene in the HBO documentary “How to Survive a Pandemic” in which Ghebreyesus is interviewed by a reporter in June 2021. The scene shared on Facbook is authentic, but the HBO documentary cut Ghebreyesus’ full answer. Accroding to a print edition of the full interview, the WHO head told the interviewer he recieved his first shot in May 2021 and then went on to explain why he had chosen not to receive it sooner. The documentary appears to have cut the part in which he says he recieved his first shot in May. 

Ghebreyesus shared an image of himself receiving the shot on his verified Twitter account in May 2021. (RELATED: Did The Who Director-General Say COVID-19 Vaccine Boosters Are Being ‘Used To Kill Children’?)

“Dr Tedros has been vaccinated and boosted against COVID-19 and has communicated this publicly, including after receiving his first dose in May 2021,” a WHO spokesperson said in an email to Check Your Fact. The social media post claiming Dr Tedros is not vaccinated is blatantly false, and another example of harmful misinformation shared in relation to vital health matters.”

Anna Mock

Fact Check Reporter