Parents Refuse Baby’s Life-Saving Heart Surgery If Vaccinated Blood Is Used


New Zealand’s health agency is taking the parents of a four-month old infant to court for refusing life-saving heart surgery if blood “tainted” by Covid vaccination is used, according to news reports, part of an alarming and dangerous trend propelled by persistent misinformation about the shots’ effect on blood.

Key Facts

Te Whatu Ora, New Zealand’s health service, has asked the courts to transfer guardianship from the infant’s parents so consent may be given to use donated blood during necessary open-heart surgery, according to the New Zealand Herald.

The child’s parents are refusing to grant consent for the operation unless blood given by unvaccinated people is used, describing vaccinated blood as “tainted.”

New Zealand’s blood service said it does not separate or label donated blood by vaccination status nor is there any evidence suggesting vaccination adversely affects the quality of blood for transfusion.

Any Covid-19 vaccine in the blood breaks down soon after injection, the blood service said, adding that all donated blood is filtered during processing so that any trace amount “poses no risk to recipients.”

The issue has created an impasse between the two parties and Sue Grey—the parents’ lawyer described by the Guardian as a “prominent anti-vaccination campaigner”—claimed the parents are simply demanding better care for their child than what the state is offering and that the state has written them off as conspiracy theorists.

Paul White, the lawyer representing the health service, said the application is based on the best interests of the child, according to the Herald, adding that most children with the same condition would have been treated weeks ago.

What To Watch For

How quickly the courts will act. White, pointing to the normal timeframe for treatment, described the case as urgent. A judge set an urgent hearing for next Tuesday following an administrative hearing at the High Court in Auckland on Wednesday. Around a 100 protestors gathered outside the court in support of the parents crusade, the Herald reported.

Key Background

Blood has been a lightning rod for Covid-based fearmongering and misinformation since vaccines were rolled out. Self-proclaimed experts and campaigners, often with little to no relevant scientific or medical expertise, push the idea that Covid-19 vaccines somehow contaminate the blood, will impart Covid itself or pass on the side effects associated with vaccines, which are themselves often vastly overstated. No scientific or medical evidence supports any of these claims and there is an abundance of evidence demonstrating the Covid vaccines in widespread use are safe, effective and have helped save many lives. The issue is a global one and there are reports from around the world, including the U.S. and Canada, of people refusing blood from vaccinated donors.


Misinformation surrounding the supposed impact of vaccination on blood made a resurgence last week with the release of “Died Suddenly.” The documentary, which sought to link excess deaths during the pandemic to vaccines, was riddled with false claims, poor evidence and unsupported conspiracies. It became a popular talking point on social media and has been widely criticized by experts. A key component of the film were blood clots found during autopsies, which it erroneously claimed were caused by immunization.

Further Reading

‘Tainted’ Blood: Covid Skeptics Request Blood Transfusions From Unvaccinated Donors (KHN)

Parents refuse use of vaccinated blood in life-saving surgery on baby (Guardian)

Immunisation expert on facts of Covid vaccination and blood donation (RNZ)

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