Fake WHO, Johns Hopkins advice used to scaremonger and confuse

Photo by CDC on Unsplash

In a prime example of how credible health authorities have been drawn into disinformation, fake COVID-19 advice misattributed to the World Health Organisation and Johns Hopkins University recently went viral and caused confusion.

One of the ways disinformation creators use to get traction for their false content is to have such content associated with or attributed to credible, well known institutions and organisations.

And two organisations that have become favourites of disinformation peddlers to abuse are the World Health Organisation (WHO) and Johns Hopkins University, both of which are at the frontlines of COVID-19 responses.

Fake WHO advice

In late April 2020 a post was shared among Namibian WhatsApp and Facebook groups and profiles with the headline: BREAKING BAD NEWS: EXTEND LOCK DOWN UPTO UNTIL DECEMBER”- W.H.O advises the whole world.

The inconsistent use of upper and lower case words and the grammatical errors are a clear and immediate indication that this was false information.

The short of it, the World Health Organisation (WHO) never advised any such thing, ever.

This post appeared in a Namibian Facebook group in late April 2020.

This is the full post as it appeared on the Share Namibia Facebook page in late April 2020.

This is the full post that was widely shared and commented on.

Fake Johns Hopkins University advice

Similarly, in late March through April 2020 a fake Johns Hopkins University “excellent summary” on COVID-19 preventative methods did the rounds on especially Facebook and WhatsApp, not just in Namibia, but globally. Much of the information it contains is wrong.

This is what it stated:

“Johns Hopkins University, sent this excellent summary to avoid contagion

share it with you because it is very clear:

The virus is not a living organism, but a protein molecule (DNA) covered by a protective layer of lipid (fat), which, when absorbed by the cells of the ocular, nasal or buccal mucosa, changes their genetic code. (mutation) and convert them into aggressor and multiplier cells.

Since the virus is not a living organism but a protein molecule, it is not killed, but decays on its own. The disintegration time depends on the temperature, humidity and type of material where it lies.

The virus is very fragile; the only thing that protects it is a thin outer layer of fat. That is why any soap or detergent is the best remedy, because the foam CUTS the FAT (that is why you have to rub so much: for 20 seconds or more, to make a lot of foam). By dissolving the fat layer, the protein molecule disperses and breaks down on its own.

HEAT melts fat; this is why it is so good to use water above 25 degrees Celsius for washing hands, clothes and everything. In addition, hot water makes more foam and that makes it even more useful.

Alcohol or any mixture with alcohol over 65% DISSOLVES ANY FAT, especially the external lipid layer of the virus.

Any mix with 1 part bleach and 5 parts water directly dissolves the protein, breaks it down from the inside.

Oxygenated water helps long after soap, alcohol and chlorine, because peroxide dissolves the virus protein, but you have to use it pure and it hurts your skin.

NO BACTERICIDE SERVES. The virus is not a living organism like bacteria; they cannot kill what is not alive with anthobiotics, but quickly disintegrate its structure with everything said.

NEVER shake used or unused clothing, sheets or cloth. While it is glued to a porous surface, it is very inert and disintegrates only between 3 hours (fabric and porous), 4 hours (copper, because it is naturally antiseptic; and wood, be
cause it removes all the moisture and does not let it peel off and disintegrates). ), 24 hours (cardboard), 42 hours (metal) and 72 hours (plastic). But if you shake it or use a feather duster, the virus molecules float in the air for up to 3 hours, and can lodge in your nose.

The virus molecules remain very stable in external cold, or artificial as air conditioners in houses and cars. They also need moisture to stay stable, and especially darkness. Therefore, dehumidified, dry, warm and bright environments will degrade it faster.

UV LIGHT on any object that may contain it breaks down the virus protein. For example, to disinfect and reuse a mask is perfect. Be careful, it also breaks down collagen (which is protein) in the skin, eventually causing wrinkles and skin cancer.

The virus CANNOT go through healthy skin.

Vinegar is NOT useful because it does not break down the protective layer of fat.

NO SPIRITS, NOR VODKA, serve. The strongest vodka is 40% alcohol, and you need 65%.

LISTERINE IF IT SERVES! It is 65% alcohol.

The more confined the space, the more concentration of the virus there can be. The more open or naturally ventilated, the less.

This is super said, but you have to wash your hands before and after touching mucosa, food, locks, knobs, switches, remote control, cell phone, watches, computers, desks, TV, etc. And when using the bathroom.

You have to HUMIDIFY HANDS DRY from so much washing them, because the molecules can hide in the micro cracks. The thicker the moisturizer, the better. * Also keep your NAILS SHORT so that the virus does not hide there.

Johns Hopkins University has distanced itself from this information in a blogpost on 3 April 2020, and even earlier on its Twitter profiles.

A Johns Hopkins University Twitter post from 28 March 2020.

And at the end of March 2020, US fact checker Snopes had published a debunk article of some of the information in the viral post.

It should be noted though that as the false information circulated on social media around the world, more disinformation was added. The following was not part of the original fake Johns Hopkins University advice.

To be clear from the start, the pH scale ranges from 0 to 14, so some of the pH values listed below are just plain wrong. Furthermore, as an Africa Check article states, the SARS-CoV-2 virus does not have a pH level. Also worth noting are the wrong symptoms for COVID-19.

This is to inform us all that the pH for corona virus varies from 5.5 to 8.5.


All we need to do, to beat corona virus, we need to take more of an alkaline foods that are above the above pH level of the Virus.

Some of which are:

Lemon – 9.9pH

Lime – 8.2pH

Avocado – 15.6pH

Garlic – 13.2pH

Mango – 8.7pH

Tangerine – 8.5pH

Pineapple – 12.7pH

Dandelion – 22.7pH

Orange – 9.2pH

How do you know you have coronavirus?

Itching in the throat,

Dry throat,

Dry cough.

So where you notice these three things quickly take warm water and drink.

Do not keep this information to yourself only. Pass it to all your family and friends. God bless you.

Against this backdrop, Namibian social media users are encouraged to seek out verified information from credible sources and to not just accept as true information received via social media.