Australia: Mother Denied Heart Transplant over Vaccination Status
Health authorities in Australia denied a mother her needed heart transplant after she received a medical exemption to forgo the coronavirus vaccine.
Vicki Derderian has relied on ventricular assistance for her weak heart after it failed in 2020. Due to her condition, she received a medical exemption from the coronavirus vaccine to avoid the off-chance she might get myocarditis or pericarditis.
When it came time to receive her desperately needed heart transplant, the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services denied her. Per the New York Post:
Vicki Derderian, from Melbourne, relies on a ventricular assist device to keep her heart functioning after it failed in 2020, and is desperate for a transplant.
She did not receive the vaccine because she is concerned that doing so could increase her risk of heart conditions such as myocarditis or pericarditis which, although rare, can be serious.
Ms. Derderian, a mother of two, expressed her frustration with the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services for their stance, which she characterized as “no jab, no heart.”
Speaking with Channel 9’s Today Show, Derderian said that the vaccine mandates have interfered with patient-doctor relationships.
“The hospital stance at the moment is no jab, no heart. I‘m ready to be on the heart transplant list because medically I’m stable to be on it. But unfortunately, because of these mandates, it has interfered with patient-doctor relationships,” she said.
“Patients like myself, we‘re being pushed into a corner and coerced to take something that goes against what we believe in,” she added. “Or not receive lifesaving treatment. And also for doctors as well, they are forced to implement this on their patients otherwise they’ll lose their jobs.”
Former Deputy Chief Health Officer Dr. Nick Coatsworth said that the greatest risk for Derderian would be to not receive the vaccine, potentially putting the transplanted organ at risk.
“From a transplant physicians point of view… the biggest risk to you when we hit your immune system like that if you get Covid-19 without having the vaccine, then there‘s a really significant risk that you’ll die and that organ will die with you,” Dr. Coatsworth said.
“And we don‘t want that to happen to you and we certainly don’t want it to happen to the family whose made that sacred donation. So it is such a complex area. I don’t envy your decision, but I do standby the rules of the transplant physicians have made here,” he said.