SciCheck Video: Don’t Confuse the Virus with the Disease


In this video, available in English and Spanish, we explain the distinction between virus and disease: The virus SARS-CoV-2 can lead to illness with the disease COVID-19.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, explained this difference between infection with the virus and the disease in an interview on CNN, saying that with vaccination against COVID-19: “You could be prevented from getting clinical disease, and still have the virus that is in your nasopharynx because you could get infected.”

A viral video distorted those comments, falsely suggesting that a COVID-19 vaccine authorized in the U.S doesn’t “protect you from covid.” The vaccine does protect against the disease COVID-19. Fauci was cautioning that it may not prevent someone from contracting the virus.  

For more on the viral distortion, see our SciCheck story “Video Misinterprets Fauci’s Comments on COVID-19 Vaccine” or the Spanish version, “Video tergiversa comentarios de Fauci sobre vacuna contra COVID-19.”

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