“There is a bad climate. Doctors are very worried. The heroes of the pandemic are now being investigated for an injection ». The voice of Filippo Anelli, president of Fnomceo, the federation of medical orders, is gloomy. After more than a year of commitment on the front line, the threat of ending up in court for having administered a vaccine only suspected of having a connection with some deaths weighs on the category, a few days after the inoculation.
The doctor may happen to be summoned by the judge and suspected of negligence or inexperience. What if this happens for an injection?
«We have legislation that generally allows us to retaliate against the operator from a criminal point of view. In this case the expenses fall on the structure to which the professional belongs. This, however, is a shortcut to take revenge on the civil law. Here we are not talking about vials that should not have been inoculated because they contain, for example, the wrong drug. We are talking about a vaccine that you have been instructed to administer to citizens because it is considered one of the only tools to stop a virus causing disasters ».
“The doctor cannot be held responsible for side effects hypothetically linked to that dose and which cannot in any way be connected to the way in which he gave the injection or assisted the nurse who physically performed it”.
What do you ask?
“If mass vaccination is rightly believed to be good for the community, health workers must be relieved of responsibility for consequences beyond their control. We are not faced with a surgical act that can be characterized by variables that the professional can be called to account for by the judicial authority. And I would add that 98% of these cases end with acquittal ».
What do you say in the chats you are exchanging?
“Everyone wonders why we have to end up in front of a magistrate just for having done our duty.”
Do you want a criminal shield?
“At this stage, a criminal shield is essential that allows vaccinators to continue participating in the immunization campaign without the risk of finding their name in the register of suspects, ending up in the newspapers and experiencing the stress of having to defend themselves from an accusation which is neither in heaven nor on earth. Heroes have called us. Heroes of what, if we lose ourselves in the first person? ”
Do you understand that some of your colleagues are refusing to vaccinate?
«No, I don’t know. If this happens, it would be isolated cases. But at this stage, everything must be done to involve the category ».
According to Paola Virginia Gigliozzi – vaccinator in Bolzano – the precedent of the registration in the register of suspects of health workers risks triggering an irreversible mechanism that will lead many doctors to revoke their availability for this job. And it will disadvantage the accession of reinforcements.
“I hope it doesn’t. I turn to colleagues, do not back down. And to politicians: protect us ».