The South African Medical Association (SAMA) has issued a stern rebuke for any medical professionals who are spreading misinformation about the various COVID-19 jabs. Some health officials have exposed themselves as ‘anti-vaccine advocates’ during the pandemic, and one case from the end of last week caused a nationwide stir.
SAMA statement alert: Spreading false information on the COVID-19 vaccine by doctors is unethical and illegalhttps://t.co/MRA3wzIU9y— SAMA (@SAMedicalAssoc) August 15, 2021
The Netcare Hospital Group has moved to distance itself from anti-vaccine comments made by one of the country’s most prominent heart surgeons, Susan Vosloo. This comes after a video of Vosloo went viral online, where she could be seen spewing false and contradictory claims about the COVID-19 pandemic.
With Vosloo’s future now up in the air, SAMA has moved to draw a clear line in the sand for any medical professional who allows their ‘personal views’ to override their professional obligations. In a no-nonsense statement published on Monday, the Association is calling for anti-vaccine healthcare workers ‘to be disciplined’.
“SAMA reiterates that COVID-19 poses a significant medical and public health risk, and notes with grave concern the spread of false information about COVID-19 vaccines by individuals within the medical fraternity. Personal beliefs and opinions must not interfere with sound medical management.”
“SAMA will not support any of its members who spread misinformation about COVID-19 vaccines. SAMA does not condone unethical and illegal behaviour by its members and calls on the HPCSA to discipline medical professionals who breach their ethical duties by proliferating COVID-19 vaccine misinformation.”
Dr. Angelique Coetzee, Chairperson of SAMA, is also happy to take a hardline stance. She believes people like Vosloo are responsible for ‘deepening the public health crisis’, and ‘should know better’ when it comes to vaccine hesitancy.
“Vaccine hesitancy should be condemned, and so should those who fuel it, particularly doctors who should know better. We share concerns with global and local scientists – and I use that term purposefully – that unfounded objections to COVID-19 vaccines deepen the public health crisis caused by the pandemic.” | Dr. Angelique Coetzee