Last week, a South Dakota emergency room nurse grabbed headlines after appearing on CNN to claim that patients suffering from coronavirus often do not believe it is real even in their dying moments.
"It wasn't one particular patient. It's just a culmination of so many people, and their last, dying words are, 'This can't be happening, it's not real.' And when they should be spending time FaceTiming their families, they're filled with anger and hatred, and it just made me really sad," Jodi Doering said in the interview.
Doering was interviewed by CNN's "New Day" co-host Alisyn Camerota and then clips from the sit down were used on a variety of other programs including "CNN Newsroom" with Brianna Keilar, "CNN Tonight" with Don Lemon and it was mentioned on Jake Tapper's "The Lead."
The clip instantly went viral on Twitter, garnering more than 5.9 million views on the platform. Watch the video below:
However, Doering's claims have now been called into question by journalist, David Zweig, who said he spoke to other nurses in Doering's area and they said they had not seen or heard of anything like what she claimed she had experienced "so many" times.
Doering's Colleagues Claim They've Had No Such Experience
In a Wired article, titled "Are COVID Patients Gasping "It Isn't Real" As They Die?,' Zweig accused CNN of not doing its due diligence and verifying Doering's claims before giving her air time on its network.
Zweig said he reached out to a number of hospitals near Doering's hometown of Woonsocket to ask other nurses about her disturbing claim and could not find anyone who shared similar experiences with their patients.
This was even the case at Huron Regional Medical Center, one of the four facilities where Doering works. Zweig noted that the center's VP for communications and marketing, Kim Rieger, spoke to several nurses at his request to hear what they had to say to Doering's interview and none of them said they had encountered COVID-19 patients who denied having the virus.
"I have not experienced this, nor have I been told of this experience, ever," one of the nurses told Rieger, according to Zweig. "Most patients are grateful, and thankful for our help," another nurse said.
'A Massive Exaggeration'
Former CNN digital producer Steve Krakauer also slammed the network for failing to verify Doering's claims before extending her a platform in a recent newsletter.
"Had they done any journalistic legwork, like Wired and National Review did, Doering would likely still be getting Twitter traction to tell what appears to be, at the least, a massive exaggeration ... but not a national TV spotlight," Krakauer wrote.