As more and more Americans and people around the world get a COVID-19 vaccine, the effectiveness of these vaccines has allowed parts of the world to begin reopening. Although scientists have been quite clear that these vaccines aren't going to be a cure-all, for many, they seem to have been hugely beneficial. There are some, though, who remain concerned about what the vaccines are really for, and the COVID vaccine magnet test isn't helping.
What is the COVID vaccine magnet test?
The COVID vaccine magnet test is a series of semi-viral videos that seem to show magnets sticking to people's arms after they've received the vaccine. The video has contributed to fears that the vaccine is being used as a way to insert microchips into the arms of Americans as tracking devices. This theory has become fairly prominent (thanks in part to Fox News hosts) and is one of the reasons many Americans are resistant to getting the vaccine.
Is there metal in the COVID-19 vaccines?
Extensive fact-checking has made it clear that there is no way that any of the federally approved COVID-19 vaccines could cause a magnet to stick to your arm. In fact, the full ingredient list for all of the approved vaccines is publicly available through the Food and Drug Administration fact sheets.
The videos nonetheless seemed to provide compelling evidence that there was metal in the shots. Several of them received more than 100,000 views, including one which featured a Baby Yoda magnet and was viewed more than 700,000 times on TikTok before it was deleted. These videos may seem trustworthy, but there's a lot that viewers don't know about what's actually going on in them.
For one thing, it's impossible to say whether the person in the video is actually vaccinated or not. We also don't know what magnets were used, and whether other objects may have allowed them to stay stuck on the skin. Anything from a hidden piece of metal to something like glue could have been used to make the magnet sticky, and the evidence is clear and emphatic in stating that there are no microchips inside COVID-19 vaccines.
Experts have made it clear that chips wouldn't even stick to magnets.
“In order for a regular magnet to stick to something else magnetically, the something else should either possess significant magnetic remanence (like another magnet), or relative magnetic permeability significantly exceeding unity (like many refrigerator doors),” Mark Allen, a professor of electrical and systems engineering at the University of Pennsylvania, told factcheck.org.
“According to the FDA fact sheets about the three FDA-authorized [COVID-19] vaccines (Pfizer, Moderna, J&J), none of the ingredients in any of the three vaccines contain any materials with these properties (significant magnetic remanence or relative magnetic permeability significantly exceeding unity.)"
Mark also added that silicon, the ingredient in microchips that allows them to function as computers, also wouldn't have this kind of magnetic resonance. What's more, most Americans carry a device around with them at all times that gives away plenty of information about their location. Chips aren't necessary when you have a cell phone in your pocket.