President Joe Biden said Friday that social media disinformation about COVID-19 and vaccinations is "killing people."
"They're killing people. The only pandemic we have is among the unvaccinated. And they're killing people," he told reporters at the White House as he left for a weekend at the presidential retreat in Camp David.
The White House is turning up the pressure on social media companies, especially Facebook, to weed out what officials say is widely spread disinformation on coronavirus vaccinations.
According to US health officials, a current spike in pandemic deaths and illnesses around the country is almost exclusively hitting people who remain unvaccinated.
"There is a clear message that is coming through: this is becoming a pandemic of the unvaccinated," Centers for Disease Control and Prevention director Rochelle Walensky told reporters on Friday.
Many of those refusing vaccinations, despite the ease of availability throughout the United States, have said they do not trust the shots. Skepticism is being fueled both by false posts spread by anti-vaccine activists online and by Republican politicians claiming the vaccinations are part of attempts at government control.
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said that Facebook and others are not doing enough.
"Everybody has a role to play in making sure there's accurate information," she said.