Vaccination and trust

Is the European Union naive about vaccination? It appears so when I read the European Commission’s communication of the 1st of December.
According to the document the covid-19 vaccines are completely safe (even though a lot of medical studies are published saying the contrary [1]) and those who do not want to take vaccines are all misinformed, read e.g. chapter III:

Nevertheless, there are certain common elements which the EU and its Member States – as  well as global partners such as NATO – could continue to work on together, not least the huge  amount of misinformation and disinformation about vaccines which has been put into the  public sphere. The Commission has set up a dedicated process to facilitate a swift response to  disinformation. A Rapid Alert System allows for effective cooperation with Member States,  with a dedicated COVID-19 Cooperation Space bringing together pandemic-related  disinformation analysis and responses. The Commission has also offered direct bilateral  support to those Member States with the lowest vaccine uptake rates, also reaching out to  healthcare professionals in those countries [5]. This could now be expanded to mobilise other  community leaders (such as business, trade union, religious, and sporting leaders). The  Commission is also engaging with online platforms to motivate them to offer space for  communication campaigns and promotion of expert views, as well as to monitor disinformation  and to share data.

[5] The EU Coalition for Vaccination brings together European health professionals’ and students’ associations to advocate for vaccination in their daily work with patients and fellow health professionals.

This is a wrong way of looking at vaccine hesitancy.

The main reason for not wanting to vaccinate is concern about side effects and long-term effects of the medication. These concerns are real and need a different response from the authorities. Healthy people do not want to take a vaccine that may pose risks to their health. Fundamental rights, like the one regarding integrity of the body, should be taken seriously [2].

Both the European and national governments need to enter into a mature discussion with the public about the way in which side effects are investigated and made transparent. People from the scientific world are saying that research into the reports of virological and epidemiological advisers of the governments is made impossible by the lack of source information, considerations and underlying data [3]. Given the major social consequences of the measures and the restrictions on fundamental rights, this must change.

Restoration of trust
Because of the disinformation that governments such as the Dutch have spread about corona [4], trust can only be restored by seriously addressing side effects and long-term effects of vaccination and not waving away concerns. The same applies to other measures taken.

The authorities should be transparent about the scientific basis of their proposals and decisions and should engage in serious discussion with those members of the public who ask relevant questions.

 

[1] It is already known that the effects of vaccination wane quickly (not only in the elderly). There are many critical publications on possible side effects, should be assessed by medical experts, that give concern. For instance a UK report, saying:

In response to this and other elements of the report certain experts write that vaccinated people will become more vulnerable because of vaccination.

[2] Not only covid certificates should respect common human rights and rule of law standards (read the COE article). The same applies to the duty to vaccinate. The precautionary principle requires well-established certainty before fundamental rights are restricted.
Maxim Februari wrote the article Wees héél voorzichtig met vrijheid, alsjeblieft (Be very careful with freedom, please):

Wees met rechten alsjeblieft even voorzichtig en precies als met besmettingen. Recht op integriteit van het lichaam is niet zomaar een grondrecht dat we hooguit meesmuilend, met rollende ogen, toestaan aan mensen die niet goed bij hun hoofd zijn.

Machine-translation:

Please be as careful and precise with rights as with infections. Right to integrity of the body is not just a fundamental right that we at most meekly, with rolling eyes, allow to people who are not right in the head.

[3] Amongst others:

# Pleidooi voor onafhankelijke toetsing RIVM-cijfers (Plea for independent review of RIVM figures), Artsencollectief 2 December 2021.
# Article by Thomas Bollen and Jannes van Roermund for Follow the Money: Regering en OMT onderbouwen QR-code met onbetrouwbare modellen (Government and OMT substantiate covid-19 certificate with unreliable models).
# Meer bescheidenheid zou medische wereld passen; ook inzake corona (More modesty would befit medical world; also regarding corona). Aart Nederveen en Lukas Stalpers, podcast De Nieuwe Wereld: Apple.
# Public Health and Medical Professionals for Transparency (here): “Four days after the Pfizer vaccine was approved for ages 16+, we submitted a Freedom of Information Act Request to the FDA for all of the data within Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine biological product file. We have now sued the FDA for not releasing the data“.

[4] Example of desinformation: in the Netherlands, it was suggested that covid-19 could be controlled by vaccination, which is incorrect since it has become endemic and vaccinated people are also contagious. It was further suggested that the vaccine would be long-lasting, which is not the case. Vulnerable vaccinated people were not informed that they must take additional measures (such as keeping their distance).

 

Over Ellen Timmer, advocaat ondernemingsrecht @Pellicaan

Verbonden aan Pellicaan Advocaten, http://www.pellicaan.nl/, kantoor Rotterdam, telefoon 088-6272287, fax 088-6272280, e-mail ellen.timmer@pellicaan.nl ||| Weblogs: algemeen: https://ellentimmer.com/ || modernisering ondernemingsrecht: http://flexbv.wordpress.com/ ||| Motto: goede bedoelingen rechtvaardigen geen slechte regels
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2 reacties op Vaccination and trust

  1. mickmar21 zegt:

    I am despondent at what the world has become in the last few years and despair at the path it is taking. Once more we are repeating history simply because we ignore it.

  2. r grootveld zegt:

    De steeds weer andere cijfers vragen inderdaad om een onderzoek. Die vaccinaties vormen een onderwerp apart. De suggestie dat een vaccinatiegraad van 100% ons uit de brand gaat helpen durf ik ernstig te betwijfelen.
    We zullen moeten accepteren dat covid een blijvertje is. Dus een bestrijding zoals tot op heden gewoon niet praktisch is. Er is bij voorbeeld geen capaciteit om de hele bevolking een paar keer per jaar te vaccineren. En ja, er vallen doden. Dat is helaas de onafwendbare praktijk. Er gaan wel vaker mensen dood. En de ziekenhuizen zijn overbezet. Dat waren ze al en niet als gevolg van een pandemie. Er zal gewoon meer geld moeten worden vrijgemaakt. Dat echter willen de verzekeraars natuurlijk niet horen. Hemel, waarom de gezondheidszorg niet weer gewoon als overheidstaak!

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