February 7, 2023

Eureka News

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Baby whose parents refused vaccine blood undergoes life-saving heart surgery

Eureka News Now —

A six-month-old baby whose parents refused to have life-saving heart surgery using blood from people vaccinated against Covid-19 has been operated on at a New Zealand hospital.

Earlier this week a judge ruled that the boy, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, would remain under the court’s guardianship until he recovered from the surgery.

According to court documents, the court also appointed two doctors as its designees to oversee matters related to the surgery and blood administration.

The baby has a congenital heart defect and needed urgent open-heart surgery to survive – but the operation was delayed because his parents insisted that only blood from donors not vaccinated against Covid-19 should be used.

Speaking to Eureka News Now affiliate Radio New Zealand (RNZ) on Friday, the parents’ lawyer, Sue Grey, confirmed that she had texted her to say the surgery was complete and her son was fine.

Police were called from the hospital on Thursday after the baby’s parents prevented doctors from taking his blood for tests or performing a chest X-ray or anesthesia exam, RNZ reported.

A new ruling Thursday night ordered parents to stop blocking doctors’ attempts to prepare for the surgery.

The case has drawn attention to the impact of vaccine misinformation two years on from global vaccination campaigns.

The baby’s parents believed that “spike proteins were present in the blood of people who were vaccinated and that these proteins caused unexpected transfusion-related deaths,” according to the ruling.

In a Q&A section on its website, the New Zealand Blood Service said, “The chance of finding spike protein in donated blood is very small, and it will be in the picogram range, if present at all.” es: “There is no evidence that this poses a risk to recipients.”

The parents previously urged the blood service to accept a donation from a person chosen by the family, but the agency declined, saying it made no distinction between vaccinated and unvaccinated donors.

Earlier this week, the court heard that Dr. Kirsten Finucane, the chief pediatric cardiac surgeon at Starship Hospital in Auckland, had told parents it was “just impractical to have a direct donor”.

Finucane consulted with other experts and determined that a heart bypass without the use of blood or blood products was not an option for the baby’s surgery, the court heard.

With the parents and doctors unable to agree on the infant’s treatment and blood transfusion, the New Zealand Health Service filed a Care of Children Act application in November, asking the court to appoint a doctor to assume temporary guardianship of the baby only care.

New Zealand has relatively high vaccination rates for Covid-19, with around 90% of people aged 12 and over having received two vaccinations, according to the Department of Health, and more than 70% of eligible adults having received a first booster shot.