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Mother denied access to vital heart transplant surgery because of vaccine status

A mother of two from Melbourne Australia is being denied access to a heart transplant because of her ‘unvaccinated’ status. 

Vicki Derderian, who suffered heart failure in 2020, has been kept alive by a VAD or battery operated life support device which mechanically pumps blood around her body. 

Although local news outlets say Vicki has a legal exemption to covid 19 vaccines, because of covid vaccine mandates in the state of Victoria she is not being added to transplant waiting lists even though she is not medically fit to undergo the vital surgery. 

She says she spent one and a half months in an intensive care unit after she had the VAD surgically fitted to keep her alive. 

Vicki says she “is not an anti-vaxxer “ and has taken “all necessary vaccines” in the course of her treatment but that she feels that the covid vaccine would likely carry elevated risks for her in her delicate condition. 

She said that heart transplant operations were no “walk in the park” adding that she wanted to minimise any risks that taking a covid vaccine may pose. 

She said she felt she had to “think twice” about taking a vaccine that has “partial approval” adding that it was “a very hard decision” and that patients like herself were “being pushed into a corner” and “coerced”. 

She continued that doctors were being forced to implement the restrictions or face losing their jobs. 

Clinical Associate Professor at Australian National University, Dr. Nick Coatsworth,  said that although he agreed with Vicki about “risk” from a “physicians point of view” the biggest risk associated with heart transplant procedures was that of an immune system weakened by the major surgical intervention being hit with a covid infection. 

Coatsworth continued that without the covid vaccine there was a “significant risk” that Vicki might die and that the donor organ might die with her adding that he didn’t want to see that happen to her or to the family that made the “sacred donation” of an organ. 

He added that  before the vaccine rollout transplant procedures had been halted during the pandemic. 

Vicki argued that there were therapeutics available that were effective in treating covid 19 and reaffirmed her decision not to take the vaccine saying she was more at risk from complications arising from VAIDS. 

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