By: Laura Vitelli
August 25 2022
There is no connection between their installation and either 5G phone masts or the COVID-19 vaccine, both of which have been shown to be safe.
A post on Instagram claims that a Public Access Defibrillator near a children’s playground in a park in Nottingham has been installed because of heart-related conditions occurring as a result of a combination the COVID-19 vaccine and 5G phone signals.
The post contains a reposted video of a man pointing towards a yellow PAD stand, who claims that children have been “dropping like flies” of heart-attacks since the COVID-19 vaccine was introduced, alluding to a conspiracy to ‘cover up’ the effects of the vaccine. The caption suggests that 5G phone signal masts are also responsible.
There is no evidence to support the claim that 5G signals are damaging to human health. A 2021 article in Nature showed that there was “no confirmed evidence that low-level radiofrequency fields above 6 GHz such as those used by the 5G network are hazardous to human health.”
5G conspiracy theory increased in popularity in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic. Some claimed that the 5G phone masts weakened the immune system, making it more likely for people to succumb to the virus. Others went as far as to claim that the COVID-19 vaccine contains nanochips intended to cause harm to the public, which will be activated by 5G signals at some point in the future.
The conspiracy theory linking COVID-19 to 5G emerged following a quickly-withdrawn article in Belgian newspaper Het Laatste Nieuws published in January 2020, which featured an interview with a doctor named Kris Van Kerckhoven. In the interview, Kerckhoven speculated the link between the then-incipient COVID-19 outbreak in Wuhan, China and the installation of 5G signal towers around the area. Even though Kerckhoven appended his speculation with the acknowledgment that he had not ‘fact-checked’ the idea, the idea took off across conspiracy theory circles, with the article quickly being reposted and shared.
Evidence has indeed emerged that suggests a very rare limited association between the mRNA COVID-19 vaccine and myocarditis among teenagers and young adult males. However, research has repeatedly shown that it remains far more likely that individuals will develop a heart condition following a COVID-19 infection than they will after receiving the vaccine. The majority of individuals who suffer myocarditis as an adverse reaction from vaccination recover completely.
Defibrillators have been found in public places in the U.K. for several years, predating both the COVID-19 pandemic and the rollout of the COVID-19 vaccine. Over recent years, the U.K. has seen increasing efforts and campaigns by charities and health organizations to make defibrillators more widely available to the public to improve the outcomes of out-of-hospital cardiac arrests. Many of these defibrillators have been installed as a result of grassroots efforts by the public, while others have been installed by private organizations –– such as the two installed in Nottingham City Center by the Nottingham Business Improvement District.
Public Access Defibrillators have been installed across the UK following research showing that it is beneficial for public health to do so. These efforts have been driven by both grassroots charities and private organizations.