The chaos caused by the novel coronavirus led people to become more wary and keep their guards up for possible carriers of the said disease. 

However, this ‘panic’ has also become the reason for the spread of fake news or misinformation which may lead the masses to fear things which are senseless, to say the least. One such error is the belief that 5G network causes cancer and even the COVID-19. 

This made Dr. Eric van Rongen to speak up on this matter and clear things up. Dr. Rongen is the Vice Chairman at the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP) which is the scientific body in control of setting limits towards exposure to non-ionizing radiation. Here’s what the doctor has to say about the 5G confusion: 

Understanding ‘radiation’

Dr. Rongen is a radiobiologist by training, and he’s been working on non-ionizing radiation for 29 years now. He explained that ‘radiation’ is such a huge term which most of us would immediately think about nuclear energy; an energy that is reflected on the Chernobyl event and similar disasters. 

Now, compared with the Chernobyl radiation that is still very much present in the area today—making it a danger zone—5G is not even close to that. It does not have anything to do with major health problems which ionizing radiation could inflict. In fact, there are no proofs that heating may allow exposure to these kinds of radiofrequency to begin with. 

READ: Advantages of 5G over 4G


The doctor says their team closely examined scientific literature. This means they always look back on research that other people have accomplished before them, reviewing their findings. They even have Japanese colleagues to assist them in answering questions through their own modeling studies so Dr. Rongen and his team could refer to it as well. 

5G unlikely to spread cancer and/or COVID-19

The scientists of ICNIRP have been working on new guidelines about five years ago even before such theories and confusion regarding the 5G started to surface. The last guideline was the year 1998. 

Here, Dr. Rongen explains that the 5G technology is not far from its 3G and 4G predecesor—and those had been in use for almost 20 years too. The only difference is that the 5G uses a different language to communicate between a mobile device and network, as well as frequencies that where not htere before when it comes to mobile telecommunications. That’s about 26 gigahertz. 

Although the frequency is relatively high, this does not mean it is as dangerous as that of the radiation enough to cause cancer or any bad effects to our body. A high frequency means waves are shorter as well as great intrinsic energy difference.

If the numbers were to go higher in the ionizing radiation spectrum, it will have the capability to break chemical bonds and damage DNA chromosomes which will definitely cause cancer. Fortunately, 5G does not pose this kind of threat. 


If those are facts established to counter the rumors that 5G could lead to cancerous effects, then it is also the same to rebut the claims that it helps in spreading our biggest threat in health at the moment: the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). There is absolutely no way 5G could spread virus particles because 5G only emits energy.

If cancer is highly unlikely with 5G, what more so with virus transmitted mostly from physical contact or exposure to possible victims?

In addition, there is no evidence that 5G’s signal (or any other signal for this matter) could reduce one’s immune system for a chance of disesases—cancer and virus alike—to penetrate the body. 

2020 guidelines on energy transmission

The update on the 5G implementiation guidelines for this year made it clear about the limits towards the amount of energy that devices such as smartphones may transmit to our bodies. One example is how the human head has a maximum energy amounting to two watts per kilogram. Our bodies amount to only 0.08 watts per kilogram. Smartphones use much lower energies than numbers the human body can take. 


This means there is also a limited amount of heat. It has been determined that if you are using your smartphone charged to its maximum power, it releases two watts per kilogram energy deposition to the head. The brain’s temperature increase would be no more than 0.1 degrees centigrade. This is still deemed safe for the physical body with no concerns of after effects such as heat stress, or as one fear’s, heart diseases. 0.08 watts per kilogram is as safe as drinking hot coffee for every couple of hours. 

There is no reason to panic about 5G

Dr. Rongen believes that the reason misinformation easily spreads—example is this about 5G—is because people are very much afraid especially these days. Plus, 5G is something new out of technology. 

Still, this isn’t a time to spread more fear by connecting our current trials to something that we have not heard before. It’s better to be informed first rather than accumulating stress which could be more deadly. 

Combat 5G misinformation with the correct information

Again, the only way to contribute to stopping false alarms online is to be properly acquainted with facts from proper and reliable sources on the internet. It’s like believing the world will end tomorrow and spreading alarming news without evidence on how is it so. 

With the 5G technology, Dr. Rongen suggests that they should give the public better understanding of what it is: its exposure level, its difference between the 3G and 4G, ans so on and so forth. On a final note, he makes clear what is obvious: there really is no proof that signals like the 5G could cause sickness — at least for now. 

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