Politics over the COVID vaccine is putting more people’s lives and health at risk.
An Ohio man needing a kidney transplant had his operation canceled just days before he was set to receive the crucial organ because the donor was unvaccinated, even though the patient would potentially die without the new kidney.
Mike Ganin, 52, was five days away from his scheduled surgery when he received the news from the Cleveland Clinic about the new policy that would prevent him from accepting the donor’s kidney, news station WKYC reported.
“It made us feel like we were back to square one,” his wife, Debi, told the outlet. “I’ve been terrified. Sometimes I have my moments that I don’t think about it, but it comes back, and I think, ‘What’s going to happen?’”
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Under the new rules, living donors must be vaccinated in order to donate an organ.
While Ganinin is vaccinated, his donor, Sue George, has no plans to get the shot.
“I don’t want to get the vaccine. I’ve got reasons — medical, religious, and also freedom,” she told the outlet.
George said that she had told doctors from the get-go that she did not get the vaccine.
“We were blindsided,” George, a longtime acquaintance of the family, told the outlet.
The prestigious medical clinic defended the policy saying that patients would be put at risk if the donor is unvaccinated, but it a COVID test could easily confirm that the donor was COVID-free at the time of the donation, negating any medical concerns. And without the organ, Ganin’s life could be in jeopardy.
This latest incident follows concerns in Colorado over a health care system that is putting people’s lives at risk and a woman who also saw her organ transplant be rejected for the same reasons.
A Colorado health system has announced it will deny transplants to unvaccinated patients, which could potentially put millions of Colorado residents’ lives at risk if the need a transplant to save their lives.
And for one Colorado resident, her decision to not get the COVID vaccine has resulted in her getting rejected for a kidney transplant.
UCHealth, a Colorado-based hospital system affiliated with the liberal University of Colorado, has made the decision to deny organ transplants to unvaccinated patients in “almost all situations.”
“In almost all situations, transplant recipients and living donors at UCHealth are now required to be vaccinated against COVID-19 in addition to meeting other health requirements and receiving additional vaccinations,” a spokesperson for UCHealth said in a statement to The Hill.
A local state representative has highlighted how the decision is already have disastrous effects for patients. The Blaze has more:
The rules made headlines on Tuesday after Rep. Tim Geitner (R-Colo.) announced that the health system denied a kidney transplant to an area woman because she did not receive the COVID-19 vaccine.
In a statement, Geitner called the practice “disgusting.”
He shared a letter that he said the unnamed patient reportedly received last week from the University of Colorado’s Anschutz Medical Campus in Aurora.
In its letter, the health system said:
The transplant team at University of Colorado Hospital has determined that it is necessary to place you inactive on the waiting list. You will be inactivated on the list for non-compliance by not receiving the COVID vaccine. You will have 30 days to begin the vaccination series. If your decision is to refuse COVID vaccination you will be removed from the kidney transplant list. You will continue to accrue waiting time, but you will not receive a kidney offer while listed inactive. Once you complete the COVID vaccination series you will be reactivated on the kidney transplant list pending any other changes in your health condition.
Now, vaccination status could determine whether you live or die. That’s the opposite of health care and is essentially the denial of lifesaving medical treatment that abrogates the right to life.