“No, I won’t give in!”. Like 2.7 million people in France, Roxane is concerned by the vaccine obligation against Covid-19. But like 300,000 other people in her case, she refuses. This 33-year-old mother works as a medico-psychological aid in an association in Dordogne, which supports adults with disabilities. Although she faces a suspension of contract without pay as of Wednesday, September 15, she is adamant: “We are still in an experimental phase. I hear too much about side effects “, I know does she justify. “I do not see the point (of the vaccine), knowing that I can still catch the Covid and that I can transmit it”, she adds.
I don’t want to risk my health. “Roxane, medico-psychological help
According to the latest figures communicated by the Ministry of Health, which date back to Sunday, September 12, 95% of liberal health professionals are vaccinated against Covid-19. In hospitals and nursing homes, this rate is 89%. The refractory to vaccines are therefore in the minority. Sur the fifty or so employees in the association for which Roxane works, seven, including her, are still not vaccinated. They share the same fears, the same lack of confidence and above all the same determination. “I’ve always been told that when you don’t want treatment, there is no obligation to take care of it. So even with cancer, if someone says they need chemo but the nobody refuses, we do not give him chemo. I want to decide what I will inject into my body. This is my last limit “, explains Carole, nursing assistant.
I love my job, it’s very sad to come to this.Cathy, medico-psychological aid
Leaving her job as a medical-psychological aid is heartbreaking for Cathy, but anger takes over. “It’s like bending my arm and giving me an injection”, she explains. This caregiver who lives alone with her two children wonders about her future but for the moment she is living “day by day”, she says. “I am looking for a small job, work in the factory. I made inquiries to link fixed-term contracts. Work, there is,” she says. One of her colleagues, also unvaccinated, has already suspended her mortgage so as not to get into financial difficulty.
Among the employees of this structure, others will not experience this period of doubt. Virginie received her two injections in April, but this educator respects the choice of her colleagues who refuse to be vaccinated against Covid-19. “Who am I to tell them ‘go get the vaccine or do this, do that?’ They accept my choice and I accept theirs. I cannot stand injunctions, we are not children “, she insists.
The non-vaccinated staff of the association is no longer registered on the schedules. The management called on an interim agency to ensure the replacements. Other health establishments have found an arrangement with certain employees who will take their leave in order to destabilize the internal organization as little as possible. Finally, there will be tolerance for those who prove that they have made an appointment in the next few days to be vaccinated.
Staff affected by compulsory vaccination and who are not will not be suspended if they are currently on sick leave. But to avoid any temptation, Social Security warns that controls will be strengthened to flush out sick leaves of convenience. Two other exceptions are also provided for in the law. First, people who have to wait between three and six months after contracting Covid-19 to be able to be vaccinated. Then those who present a prescription for medical contraindication because they are allergic to vaccines for example. But this concerns at most a few hundred cases.
In addition, during a press conference on August 26, the Minister of Health Olivier Véran announced that “considering the epidemic situation and the total mobilization of all caregivers, all hospital directors, to save as many lives as possible in difficult conditions, we were not going to add to them the constraint of compulsory vaccination. “ He clarified, however, that this exemption only applies to “the only ultra-marine territories affected by the wave“, [la Martinique et la Guadeloupe ] and that it was temporary. Since then, the Ministry of Health has clarified that there would indeed be flexibility in controls, but only for staff working in the Covid units of these departments.
The vaccination obligation is therefore imposed on all other staff concerned by the measure, namely those who work in a non-Covid service in the hospital, in nursing homes, liberal health professionals (dentists, midwives, general practitioners, pharmacists, etc.), to those who work with vulnerable people such as in reception facilities for disabled people, or even home helpers.
In addition, the caregivers are not the only ones concerned, there are also the security guards, the computer scientists, the medical secretaries or the cooks of these structures. But will they really be punished, at the risk of destabilizing the healthcare system? In Guadeloupe and Martinique for example, only a third of nursing home staff are now vaccinated.