Illustrative photo – Jana Zwyrtek Hamplová (NEZ) spoke at a press conference on success in the second round of the Senate elections, October 1, 2022, Kroměříž.
Olomouc – The publication of false information about the transmission of highly infectious tuberculosis (TB) in Olomouc from the ranks of Ukrainian soldiers who are training in the Libavá military area is being investigated by the police as spreading an alarmist message. The offender faces up to three years in prison. The police informed about it on Twitter. A falsified message from a hygiene station warning of tuberculosis is circulating through social media and e-mail, on Tuesday it was also shared on her Facebook profile for several hours by the independent senator for Kroměříž and lawyer Jana Zwyrtek Hamplová. She later deleted the post and apologized. The report was denied on Tuesday by the Minister of Health Vlastimil Válek (TOP 09) and hygienists.
“In connection with the publication of false information about the spread of tuberculosis in Olomouc, we have initiated criminal proceedings in the matter on suspicion of committing the offense of spreading an alarm message, for which the perpetrator faces up to three years in prison,” the police said. The false report contains information that the Olomouc regional hygiene station is sending invitations to people for an extraordinary examination for TB, which is being spread by Ukrainian soldiers staying in the region for training.
The Regional Hygiene Station of the Olomouc Region (KHS) stated on the website that the announcement is false. “KHS hereby warns all persons that this is a fraudulent notice spread by e-mail and then social networks, and the information contained in it is not provided by KHS. We ask all persons who receive this false notice not to spread it further and not to respond to them,” emphasized the Olomouc hygienists.
The post appeared on the Facebook profile called “Jana Zwyrtek Hamplová fanpage” on Tuesday morning, after lunch it was already deleted. Later, the senator posted an apology there and an explanation of why she shared the false news. “I have to apologize for the post about tuberculosis in Olomouc. I received a message from a trusted address that I trusted. Now I know that it could have been intentional, with the aim of harming me. Next time I will have to call hygiene directly – experience,” she said. The Minister of War criticized Zwyrtek Hamplová for spreading this “extremely repulsive disinformation”, causing fear of infection among people and connecting it with the training of Ukrainian soldiers.
In the past, lawyer Zwyrtek Hamplová criticized measures against the spread of covid, including vaccinations, or the government's attitude towards Ukraine. According to their critics, they often share and spread dangerous disinformation, for example at the end of last year there were false reports about the mass disconnection of people from electricity. Some of her expressions on social networks are also being investigated by the independent control body of the Czech Bar Association. Last year, she was elected to the Senate for Kroměříž.
In the Czech Republic, children were vaccinated against TB until 2010, but the vaccination was discontinued due to a small number of cases and significant side effects. Only children from risky environments are vaccinated, for example newborns of mothers from countries with a higher incidence of infection. Last spring, the State Health Institute (SZÚ) said that in recent weeks it had recorded more positive samples for the bacteria that cause TB than in the same period the year before. Year-on-year, the recorded cases at that time increased by about 46 percent. The analysis did not show a connection with the wave of refugees from Ukraine at the time.
In 2021, 221 cases of TB were recorded in the Czech Republic among persons born in the country and 132 among persons born abroad, of which 35 were in Ukraine. In the long term, foreigners make up about a third of the cases, most often men who went to the Czech Republic for work.