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Coronavirus: 100 doctors express opposition to vaccinating children

CM 11/04/2021

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Some 100 medical professionals expressed opposition to vaccinating children with the coronavirus vaccine and separating between vaccinated and unvaccinated people in a letter to the Health Ministry on Sunday, according to Israeli media.

“We believe that there is no room for vaccinating children at this time when we will base ourselves on the following attributes – caution, modesty, the understanding that ‘haste is from the devil’, the recognition that we do not understand everything about the virus and the vaccine against it and the first commandment of medicine – ‘First do not harm,'” wrote the medical professionals in the letter.
While the professionals admitted that the Pfizer vaccine was shown to prevent serious coronavirus infection and mortality in children, they stressed that children do not usually experience severe symptoms and that the long-term possible side effects of the vaccine, even if rare, will only be known after years of study.
The signees to the letter added that it is also unclear how long immunity from the vaccine lasts, which variants it works against, how often booster shots will be needed and what the far-reaching implications of the periodic immunization on the immune system and the evolution of the virus could be.
The signatories  additionally claimed that the prevailing view among the scientific community is that the vaccine can not lead to herd immunity, meaning there is no justification for vaccinating children. In opposition to the claim, a number of health officials in Israel have indicated that the vaccination campaign has brought Israel to herd immunity already in recent weeks.
The medical professionals stressed that they believe that vaccinating children is not appropriate at this time, as putting even a handful of children at risk of unknown side effects is not worth the protection it will afford them against a disease the signees say is not dangerous to children.
The signatories  stressed that at-risk populations should be vaccinated and a return to routine should occur under an almost complete vaccination of the population, but added that children should be allowed to return to routine without needing the vaccine and that separations between vaccinated and unvaccinated people should be removed.

Prof. Itamar Grotto, former deputy director-general of the Health Ministry, told Army Radio that the “risk of the vaccine is not zero. We need to tell parents that the vaccine is recommended and good, but also leave more space for their considerations. According to my personal opinion, the entrance of children to various locations should not be dependent on showing a green pass.”
Prof. Shlomo Winker, director of the Leumit HMO, told Army Radio that the signees of the letter should remember that infection rates in Israel are only falling in light of the massive vaccination campaign. Winker warned that nine children had died to the virus and 120 children had entered intensive care units due to the virus, 60 of whom suffered cardiac syndromes. “It’s important to know the facts,” said Winker.

Source: Jerusalem Post

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