Fact check: SARS-CoV-2 was not created so the population would be vaccinated

Social media posts have made the false claim that the coronavirus was created “for the vaccine”, rather than the other way around.

Reuters Fact Check. REUTERS

Examples can be seen (here , here , here , here).

“The vaccine wasn’t brought in for Covid...Covid was brought in for the vaccine”, the posts read. “Once you realize that, everything else will make sense.”

But there is no evidence that the coronavirus was created, or deliberately spread, as a ruse to lead to widespread vaccination.

The coronavirus outbreak started with a cluster of pneumonia cases of unknown origin in Wuhan, China, which was reported to the World Health Organization (WHO) by Chinese authorities on December 31, 2019 (here).

As the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) explains, many of the early patients had links to a seafood and live animal market where a human might have contracted the virus from an animal (here). After this, the virus could spread from person to person.

The virus that causes COVID-19 has been named Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2, or SARS-CoV-2 (here).

Many different countries have independently proven that SARS-CoV-2 exists, and the genetic sequences for different strains of the virus are readily available online (here).

These sequences contain instructions for creating the virus’s proteins, which are the basis for the Pfizer-BioNTech, Oxford-AstraZeneca and Moderna coronavirus vaccines.

Ultimately, the vaccines are designed to save lives by giving people immunity to the disease.

So far, there have been more than 114 million confirmed cases of COVID-19, which has led to more than 2.5 million deaths worldwide (


False. The coronavirus vaccine was created in response to the outbreak of SARS-CoV-2.

This article was produced by the Reuters Fact Check team. Read more about our fact-checking work here.