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Man Who Refuses COVID-19 Vaccination Denied Heart Transplant


David Ferguson believes his son deserves a heart transplant even though he isn’t vaccinated.

“My son has gone to the edge of death to stick to his guns,” said David Ferguson of his son DJ.

According to him, the 31-year-old is fighting for his life at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and is in desperate need of a heart transplant.

“His heart has deteriorated so much that it won’t work on its own,” Ferguson said.

He was at the front of the line for a transplant, according to his family, but he is no longer eligible because he has not received the COVID-19 vaccination, according to hospital policy. Ferguson also stated that his son refuses to have the shot.

“It’s kind of against his basic principles. He doesn’t really believe in it,” he said.

Brigham and Women’s said in a statement that “like many other transplant programs in the United States – the COVID-19 vaccine is one of several vaccines and lifestyle behaviors required for transplant candidates in the Mass General Brigham system in order to create both the best chance for a successful operation and also the patient’s survival after transplantation.”

“Post any transplant, kidney, heart, whatever, your immune system is shut off,” said Dr. Arthur Caplan, the head of medical ethics at NYU Grossman School of Medicine.

He stated that being immunized is required for this type of procedure.

“The flu could kill, a cold could kill you, COVID could kill you. The organs are scarce, and they are not going to distribute them to someone who has a poor chance of living when others who are vaccinated have a better chance post-surgery of surviving,” Caplan said.

DJ is currently a patient at Brigham and Women’s Hospital. He is the father of two children, with a third on the way. The family stated that they are unsure what they will do at this time. They are considering transferring. But they say he’s too weak to move right now.

While the family believes DJ has received excellent care from the doctors and nurses at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, they disagree with the heart transplant COVID-19 vaccination policy.

“It’s his body; it’s his choice,” Ferguson said.

Instead of a transplant, DJ could use a mechanical pump. Doctors will perform the surgery even if he has not been immunized.


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