Fri. May 20th, 2022

A hospital in Colorado rejected a woman for a kidney transplant after she refused to receive a COVID-19 vaccine, officials have confirmed.

Leilani Lutali received a letter on September 28 informing her that the transplant team at the University of Colorado Hospital had decided to designate her inactive on the transplant waiting list.

“You will be disabled on the non-compliance list by not receiving the COVID vaccine,” the letter said.

If Lutali continues to refuse to get a vaccine, she will “be removed from the kidney transplant list,” it added.

Neither Lutali nor her designated donor, Jaimee Fougner, has received a COVID-19 vaccine. Fougner does not have for religious reasons, while Lutali believes that not enough is known about the vaccines, they told KCNC-TV.

According to Lutali, hospital officials previously said that vaccination was not necessary to get a transplant.

“Here I am, willing to be a direct donor to her. It does not affect any other patient on the transplant list, ”said Fougner. “How can I sit here and allow them to murder my friend when I’ve got a really good kidney and can save her life?”

The hospital did not respond to a request for comment. It told the news media in a statement that there are many demands on transplant centers, e.g. To require patients to avoid alcohol.

“In almost all situations, transplant recipients and living donors at UCHealth must now be vaccinated against COVID-19 in addition to meeting other health requirements and receiving additional vaccinations. “Some U.S. transplant centers already have this claim in place, and others are making this policy change now,” the hospital said.

State Representative Tim Geitner, a Republican who first drew attention to the situation, said in a Facebook Live video that he spoke with Lutali and that she has tested positive for antibodies to CCP virus, which causes COVID-19, but the hospital denies to make an exception.

“It has been demonstrated through documentation. And yet UCHealth refuses to provide this kind of care, this kind of life-saving care — it’s not even just typical care, it’s life-saving care. And it is incredibly frustrating, incredibly sad, incredibly disgusting that UCHealth would make this type of decision and influence an individual in such a dramatic and profound way, ”he told supporters.

According to the United Network for Organ Sharing, a nonprofit that administers the U.S. organ transplant system, such policies are not unique but are not mandatory for transplant facilities.

“Each transplant hospital makes its own decisions about the admission of candidates according to the hospital’s best clinical assessment, including whether a specific vaccination is part of their qualification criteria. If you have questions about set-up criteria at your transplant hospital, we encourage you to contact the hospital directly, ”the network states on its website.

At least one other hospital reportedly rejected potential transplant recipients because of refusal to receive a COVID-19 vaccine.

Sam Allen was told earlier this year at the University of Washington Medicine that his heart transplant could not be completed unless he was vaccinated.

“The cardiologist called me and we had a discussion and he informed me that ‘Well, you’ll have to get vaccinated to get a transplant.’ And I said, ‘This is news to me. And no one has ever told me that before. ‘And he says,’ Yes, that’s our policy, ‘Allen told KTTH Radio.

The university states on its website that people must be fully vaccinated before undergoing a solid organ transplant “unless you have a specific medical exception that prevents you from getting the vaccine.”

Zachary Stieber


Zachary Stieber covers US news, including politics and lawsuits. He started at The Epoch Times as a subway reporter in New York City.


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