The fateful date falls this Wednesday, September 15: healthcare workers who have not received at least one dose of anti-Covid vaccine risk the suspension of their contract. Those who have received a dose must still test negative within 72 hours until their second dose, and their vaccination schedule must be complete by October 15. This concerns all staff in health establishments (including administrators and students), home helpers, firefighters, ambulance attendants and gendarmes. The only exceptions: people with a certificate of recovery from Covid less than six months old, and those with a certificate of contraindication to vaccination. In the event of non-compliance with these rules, people will be suspended from activity without remuneration, but they cannot be dismissed.
Vast majority already vaccinated
In Moselle, the vaccination rate of nursing staff is excellent: around 90%. While some still have a few weeks to complete their vaccination schedule, the most reluctant are now up against the wall. This is the case with Lucie, an employee of an analysis laboratory. She says she is afraid of messenger RNA vaccines, for which we lack perspective, according to her. “The vaccines that we had in the past, when there weren’t too many adjuvants, we tolerated them very well“, explains the fifty-year-old, who had not hesitated when getting vaccinated against hepatitis B, compulsory for caregivers.”Messenger RNA, as long as we are still in this whole experimentation phase, I find it abnormal that we are forced to do so. In two or three years, maybe. But for now, I think we really have to be careful“.
An argument that cannot hear Maryse Duval, general manager of the SOS Seniors group, which manages around thirty nursing homes in Moselle. “What is the sufficient time to judge the effectiveness of the vaccine? We cannot continue not to live. We know that the vaccine protects against the most serious forms. The people who are dead or in intensive care now are 98% or 99% of the people who were not vaccinated. We have the impression that around us, there are plenty of Nobel Prize winners in medicine to talk to us about vaccination!“Within the SOS Santé group, 98.5% of caregivers are vaccinated.
It is up to the doctors to assess the benefit-risk for us, as they do for all diseases in our lifetime.
Certificates, PCR tests, leave and recuperation
To be able to continue working, Lucie will present her employer with a certificate of contraindication to vaccination, and she will have to be tested every three days. Simon is a nurse in a public hospital in Moselle. He is going to work one last time this Wednesday, then take time off and recuperation: “I do not hide from you that I am in reflection: I am married, father of a family, I am not trying to get sick either. We are put on unpaid leave, with this questioning: shouldn’t I, in the end, give in to the pressure, against my values, against my convictions?”
Neither Simon nor Lucie dispute the severity of the epidemic: “I pay attention, I respect barrier gestures all the time. I don’t go to the restaurant, to the movies, too bad for me. On the other hand, that we went so far for the job, it is above everything“, believes Lucie. Simon, he says he knows many colleagues who have been vaccinated”in tears“. Both affirm it loud and clear: they are not antivax, but they wonder about the speed of the marketing of anti-Covid vaccines, regret that the track of the treatments has not been more thorough And above all, we don’t give them a choice.