BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Concerns surrounding COVID-19 disinformation have been growing.

In response, U.S. Sen. Chris Van Hollen joined Protect Our Care’s virtual press conference Tuesday along with top local and national health officials to address the rise of false information they say is endangering millions of Americans.

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Health officials say for the first time in six months, COVID-19 cases are rising in all 50 states and the unvaccinated make up about 90 percent of hospitalizations and deaths.

Dr. Jennifer Nuzzo, associate professor at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, is among many other leaders aggressively working to combat the rise of COVID-19 disinformation, especially surrounding the COVID-19 vaccine.

“We are in a very, very worrisome phase right now,” she said.

It’s costing lives, Nuzzo said.

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“Unfortunately our efforts have slowed, and our rollout of vaccines have been meeting tremendous amounts of resistance that is just, unfortunately, setting us back farther than we absolutely need to be by now,” Nuzzo said.

As of Wednesday, for the ninth day in a row, more than 100 new COVID-19 cases were reported in Maryland. The statewide positivity rate has also increased to 1.65 percent.

With the delta variant on the rise targeting the most vulnerable, unvaccinated people, health officials say now is the time to refocus on prevention and education.

“Just hope that we can all pull together as a nation to protect each other and to make sure at the very least, it’s fine if people want to make the decision not to be vaccinated, but to make sure they do so based on facts not lies,” Nuzzo said.

The COVID-19 vaccine has been proven safe and effective. The CDC says it can keep you from getting and spreading the virus. It can also keep you from getting seriously ill even if you contract COVID-19.

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For the latest information on coronavirus go to the Maryland Health Department’s website or call 211. You can find all of WJZ’s coverage on coronavirus in Maryland here