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Requests for false vaccine exemption letters cause 'dismay' for B.C. doctor

Last Updated Sep 10, 2021 at 9:26 pm PDT

FILE -- -- Tamara Dus, director of University Health Network Safety Services, administers a Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at a hospital in Toronto on Monday, Dec. 14, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
Summary

A doctor posted a letter online due to 'a slowly increasing number of calls from patients' about vaccine exemptions

'Covid vaccine mandates decrease the likelihood of you, your family, your neighbors, and community dying,' he writes

SUN PEAKS (NEWS 1130) — A doctor in B.C.’s Interior is asking people to stop requesting letters saying they can’t be immunized against COVID-19, saying he is “not prepared to commit fraud so someone can
avoid a vaccine.”

The letter from Dr. Shane Barclay, who works at the Sun Peaks Health Centre, was posted online Wednesday because of “a slowly increasing number of calls from patients” since B.C. announced its vaccine card.

It starts by saying there are clear — but few — grounds for an exemption. Anyone 11 and younger, those who have received a vaccine for another illness in the last two weeks, and people who had a severe allergic reaction to their first shot.

“If a patient asks for a letter of exemption and does not fulfill one of the above criteria, physicians are being asked to write a medical-legal letter which amounts to fraud. Fraud is a
crime. A doctor can be charged, fined and potentially lose their license to practice medicine for fraud,” he writes.

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Another issue causing “dismay” and prompting him to publish his thoughts is the number of people he says tell him they are frustrated with being “mandated” to get the jab, pointing out that such a mandate does not currently exist.

“That may be something to eventually go through the courts to be decided. But here’s a thought. When people get in a car, do they put on a seat belt, follow the speed limit and stop at red lights? Those are things that are ‘mandated’ (actually laws) that were brought in to decrease the likelihood of the driver, their family, their neighbors and community from dying in a motor vehicle accident,” he writes.

“Covid vaccine mandates decrease the likelihood of you, your family, your neighbors and community from dying from Covid. Simple.”

RELATED: Unvaccinated COVID-19 patients straining B.C. hospitals, particularly in Interior

He goes on to say vaccines are safe, and more effective than any currently available treatments at preventing serious illness and death.

“I guess for completeness, although I shouldn’t even have to address this, chloroquine and ivermectin DO NOT work against Covid. Plain and simple.”

RELATED: B.C.’s unvaccinated vast majority of ICU cases in province

Barclay explains by saying doctors will continue to treat patients regardless of whether they have been immunized, but that some precautions will be put in place at his clinic when seeing those patients in person.

“To be clear, we are not ‘mandating’ vaccinations in order to see patients in person. This is not some form of ‘punishment’. We are simply trying to safeguard the unvaccinated, our staff and other patients.”

He ends by reiterating his hope that everyone who can get vaccinated — will.

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