John Massie, a professor of paediatrics at the University of Melbourne, is urging doctors to vaccinate children as young as 12 with the experimental COVID-19 vaccine, regardless of parental permission.
The professor also recommended children as young as five get the vaccine.
In the article he co-authored in the Medical Journal of Australia (MJA), Mr Massie argues this forced vaccination of children is both ethical and legal and should become a national standard.
According to the professor, vaccine providers will not face legal repercussions for adverse reactions because of support and compensation from the Australian government.
“The federal government has indemnified clinicians and implemented a no-fault claims process for the Covid-19 vaccine. This applies to vaccines given at any age, including to young people aged 12-17 years. Therefore, negligence claims in the event of a vaccine adverse event should not be a reason to deter a vaccine provider from giving the vaccine,” the authors wrote.
“We’re trying to preserve parental involvement in the care and treatment decisions,” said Mr Massie in an MJA podcast episode..
“Parents are legal and natural decision-makers for their kids, but they don’t have absolute authority or absolute sovereignty over their kids. . .We wouldn’t be encouraging kids to keep it a secret unless they had to. We would like kids to tell their parents that they’ve had it,” he added.
“Then as the kids are a bit older, then sort of less relying on the parental input. And if the parents are refusing something that the doctor and the kid think is good for them, then the weighting of the parent’s view becomes much less.”
Mr Massie and his co-authors Georgia Paxton, Nigel Crawford and Margie Danchin say that the benefits of the experimental COVID-19 vaccine outweigh the risks of severe side effects, including myocarditis and pericarditis, especially common among young vaccinated boys.
The authors also write that there is no minimum age for a mature minor.
“There is evidence that many young people have similar cognitive capacity to adults, which would suggest that they should be able to give informed consent for Covid-19 vaccination,” state the authors.
“Conversely, neurobiology also tells us that adolescents may have a reduced appreciation of risk. However, given the known risks of SARS-CoV-2 infection outweigh the risks of an adverse event to a Covid-19 vaccine, and that the vaccine is strongly protective, this concern against vaccinating young people does not hold ethical weight,” they continued.
“Regret is not unique to adolescence and given the short-term nature of vaccination, the possibility of regret also does not carry a great deal of ethical weight against vaccinating the young person. . .Post-vaccination support, to manage family conflict or adverse reactions to the vaccine, should be organised through the young person’s GP or community health provider.”
Australia’s Department of Health data shows that over three quarters or around 943,000 Australian children aged 12 to 15 are fully vaccinated. About 31 per cent or 714,000 children aged five to 11 have had their first shot.
“The most common reactions reported included vomiting, paleness, fainting, dizziness and headache,” said a Therapeutic Goods Administration report.
However, the TGA did not reveal the most severe reported vaccine reaction among the age group.
“We encourage reporting of adverse events even if people think there is only a small chance the event could be linked to vaccination. Some events would have happened anyway, regardless of vaccination. This is particularly the case when millions of people are being vaccinated,” they stated.
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