Should COVID-19 vaccination be mandatory for healthcare workers? According to a recent report by Sciensano, just over 73% of healthcare professionals received at least one injection. Our reporters gathered the testimony of Esther, the nursing assistant, who is currently refusing to vaccinate.
Esther Issa, 43, works as a nursing assistant in a nursing home in Hino where 75% of the staff are vaccinated. At the moment, she refuses to vaccinate. “I’m more afraid of the vaccine than getting contaminated because I’ve never had it before and had to work in Covid suites during the three waves,” Esther begins, “And I’ve never had an infection.”
Esther wants to maintain her freedom of choice. A situation that exposes her to daily social pressures, she explains. “And even at the business level, there’s also this pressure there. When your boss says to you ‘But why don’t you do it?'” You’re part of the medical profession and don’t accept the vaccine, it’s unimaginable.” “Somewhere you feel a little embarrassed,” recognize.
The Syndicate of Senior Physicians calls for compulsory vaccination of nursing staff
Esther is not the only caregiver to refuse vaccination: at Charleroi Grand Hospital, about 20% of the nursing staff have refused to be vaccinated against COVID-19 at the moment. “The concerns come from the fact that the vaccine is new, that we don’t have enough perspective, that we fear side effects”, details Manfredi Ventura, medical director of the Grand Hospital Charleroi and president of the French-speaking association of senior physicians.
Staff who thus remain in contact with patients. The Senior Physicians Association advocates compulsory vaccination of caregivers. “We fully support the fact that the media continues, this is important because informed people will be able to spread this information around them but at a certain moment, when we notice reluctance which is completely subjective and based on esoteric rules I think we should force movement and force people to vaccinate”, Explique Manfred Ventura.
“This is nothing new and inhumane, you should know that hepatitis vaccine is mandatory for healthcare workers”, He says. Esther, she’s not categorical, her attitude could change. If vaccination of nursing staff becomes compulsory, they are subject to it.