FALSE: Bill Gates is developing COVID-19 vaccines with microchips

Claim: COVID-19 vaccines from the US will have microchips.

A series of screenshots of a conversation on Facebook Messenger say that the US will soon release a vaccine for the disease that has a microchip.

According to the messages, US officials will forcibly enter homes to administer the vaccine with a microchip. This will be made legal through House Resolution 6666 or the "COVID–19 Testing, Reaching, And Contacting Everyone (TRACE) Act," which was introduced by Congressman Bobby Rush on May 1.

The message said: "Malapit na nilang ilabas ang vaccine dito na may microchip. 'Wag kayong magpa-vaccine 'pag lumabas na diyan sa Pinas kasi ibang klasing needles ang gagamitin, yung tulad sa Europe na may microchip na. Inform mo lahat ng taong mahal mo sa buhay. Hindi na biro itong nangyayari. Itong virus ang way nila para ma-implement ang microchip."

(The vaccine with a microchip will soon be released here. That's why you shouldn't get vaccinated when it becomes available in the Philippines because they'll use a different kind of needle, the kind with a microchip that's similar to what they use in Europe. Tell all your loved ones. What's happening isn't a joke. This virus is their way of implementing microchips.)

They added that US infectious disease expert Anthony Fauci is an accomplice of Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates, who supposedly orchestrated the COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting vaccine that will be released.

This claim was sent to Rappler for fact checking.

Rating: FALSE

The facts: There are no official reports on studies being done on a COVID-19 vaccine that will inject people with a microchip.

According to the BBC, the rumors began in March, when Gates participated in an Ask Me Anything session on Reddit on COVID-19. In a response to a question on how businesses will operate moving forward, Gates said, "Eventually we will have some digital certificates to show who has recovered or been tested recently or when we have a vaccine who has received it."

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, which has pledged more than $1 billion for COVID-19 vaccine research and delivery, told the BBC, "The reference to 'digital certificates' relates to efforts to create an open-source digital platform with the goal of expanding access to safe, home-based testing."

Gates himself also told reporters on Thursday, June 4, "I've never been involved in any sort of microchip-type thing."

There have been a number of fact checks by organizations across the world on false claims about Gates and a microchip in COVID-19 vaccines. Among them are fact check articles by Open in Italy, Agência Lupa in Brazil, Politifact in the US, Ellinika Hoaxes in Greece, Faktograf in Croatia, Demagog in Poland, and Décrypteurs-Radio in Canada.

The US' HS 6666 does not mention forcible entry of homes to vaccinate residents. If passed into law, the bill will allow the secretary of health and human services to award grants to entities for COVID-19 diagnostic testing, contact tracing, and quarantine. This will be done through mobile health units or providing testing or quarantine services in patients' residences, as necessary. – Vernise L Tantuco/Rappler.com

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