Australian Ad for Vaccine Depicts Young Woman on Ventilator Gasping for Breath

Ad campaigns have taken a softer approach in the United States, where vaccination rates have stagnated in recent weeks.

A dramatic COVID-19 advertisement showing a young woman lying on a hospital bed, hooked up to a ventilator and struggling to breathe is stirring up controversy.

"Covid can affect anyone. Stay home. Get tested. Book your vaccination,” says the ad, which aired in Australia.

Just 11% of Australians are vaccinated, and they’re hoping the ad will shock young people into getting the vaccine. But some say the ad goes way too far.

“It’s so over-the-top and manipulative and heavy-handed,” Ad Age columnist Barbara Lippert told Inside Edition. “Had they not used a fake actress, with fake makeup and fake medical supplies — if they had used actual people who survived talking about what they went through, it would have been very effective.”

In the U.S., ad campaigns are using a much softer approach, showing vaccinated Americans getting on with their lives. Unfortunately, they don't seem to be working.

Vaccination rates have stagnated. The nation is recording 19,455 new COVID-19 cases per day, up 47.5% from the previous week.

Many nations, including Singapore and New Zealand, are using a similar upbeat message. 

“I think the American ads take the right tack, in that they’re showing people who are doing actual things that COVID survivors could do, and they’re showing the world, people don’t have to be so afraid,” Lippert said.

Meanwhile, in a push to get more young people vaccinated, President Joe Biden posted a retro photo of himself today with the message, "know this young person would've gotten vaccinated."

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