Melbourne mother refused heart transplant due to being unvaccinated

A Melbourne mother claims that she is not eligible for a heart transplant due to her lack of Covid vaccination, despite having a medical exemption.

Melbourne mother refused heart transplant due to being unvaccinated
Vicki Derderian
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A Melbourne mother claims she is being refused a lifesaving heart transplant because she is not vaccinated for Covid, despite having a medical exemption.

Vicki Derderian said the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services had essentially told her: “No jab, no heart.”

She told Channel 9’s Today Show that she had been told she was ineligible for a heart transplant unless she took the vaccine which she had refused because she feared it would increase her risk of heart conditions like myocarditis.

The mother of two said she was ready for a heart transplant but “the hospital stance at the moment is no jab, no heart”.

“Patients like myself, we‘re being pushed into a corner and coerced to take something that goes against what we believe in. Or not receive lifesaving treatment,” she said.

“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 he sympathised with Derderian‘s plight but insisted the rules were valid.

He said an unvaccinated patient who got Covid-19 could die and the transplanted organ would be lost.

“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,” he 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.

“I don’t envy your decision, but I do standby the rules of the transplant physicians have made here.”

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  • By Avi Yemini

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