Vaccination pass: a former lawyer challenges the obligation of the 3rd dose before the Council of State

Victim of significant side effects following the injection of the second dose of vaccine, a former lawyer reconverted in medicine claims before the Council of State the suspension of the provisions of the decree of January 13 imposing the 3rd dose.

Photo: ©AdobeStock/Romain Talon

We bet that all women who have suffered gynecological disorders following an injection of anti-covid vaccine will feel concerned by the interim relief pleaded this Monday morning before the Council of State. The National Agency for the Safety of Medicines and Health Products (ANSM) may indeed explain that “The available data do not allow determining the direct link between the vaccine and the occurrence of these menstrual cycle disorders”, the women who feel them are convinced of the opposite. The same agency also has data, as reported by the Santé Magazine site: “3,870 cases of menstrual disorders were observed after vaccination with Comirnaty from Pfizer-BioNTech and 562 cases after vaccination with Spikevax from Moderna”. But the ANSM wants to be reassuring, it is “mostly non-serious events”.

Gynecological disorders, tinnitus and severe asthenia

Ms. X, 39, does not share this opinion. Following the second vaccine injection in May 2021, she suffered from significant side effects: gynecological disorders, but also tinnitus (hearing problems) in the left ear, and especially severe asthenia. “I’ve known her for years, she’s a woman with incredible energy. And then suddenly, she started sleeping 12 hours a day, but that was not enough, she woke up in the same state as if she had spent a sleepless night” confides his lawyer Me Delphine Provence. Result, this former lawyer who gave up the dress to devote herself to medicine (she is registered in the third year) could not attend her classes for two months or take care of her three children aged 3, 5 and 9 years old. Suffice to say that she has no desire to relive these health problems by undergoing a third injection. This is all the more so since his serological test reveals an antibody level of 472 Ac AU/ML, i.e. almost ten times the rate deemed “significant” which is 55.

Problem: the law did not plan to take into account the presence of these antibodies. Furthermore, according to her attending physician, the major disorders she has suffered do not fall within the exhaustive list of pathologies set out on the Cerfa form which justify a contraindication. This is why it decided to seize the Council of State to challenge the decree of January 13, 2022 insofar as it extends the booster dose to those under 65.

“The government is endangering its people”

It is 10:30 a.m. on Monday morning, when Councilor Mathieu Herondart opens the hearing. He proposes to the parties to enter directly into the heart of the matter and gives the floor to Me Provence. “It is recognized that vaccines can cause side effects, statistics suggest 24% of serious side effects. This can be a death, a vital prognosis or hospitalization. she explains. The lawyer points out that her client was vaccinated very early because this surgeon’s wife had confidence in vaccines. Only the side effects she suffered from the second injection were too heavy. She does not want to undergo a third dose, which prevents her from continuing her internship at the hospital. “The role of the state is to protect the citizens, underlines Me Provencebut we have proof that the government is endangering its population, we are told about collateral victims, this is not what the law says, the risk-benefit balance must be assessed individually”. For her : “The government must stop playing Doctor Maboul, it’s up to doctors to prescribe the 3e dose, or not”. This is all the more so, she adds, since her client is 39 years old, but the risk of developing a serious form when you are under 50 is almost nil. Conversely, it is women who develop the most side effects following vaccine injections. It therefore asks the Council of State to suspend article 1 of the decree which prescribes the third dose, at least in that it does not provide that people who have developed side effects at the 1e or 2e dose can be exempted.

But the possibility of being exempted from the third dose already exists, retorts the legal director of the Ministry of Health Charles Touboul. “Your request is satisfied by point 3 of appendix 2 of the decree of 1er June 2021 » he specifies. Councilor Hérondart carefully notes the reference. You can actually read this:

“I.-The cases of medical contraindications preventing vaccination against covid-19 mentioned in article 2-4 are: (…)

3° A recommendation established after multidisciplinary medical consultation not to perform an additional dose of vaccine following the occurrence of an adverse effect of severe or serious intensity attributed to a previous dose of vaccine reported to the pharmacovigilance system (for example: occurrence of myocarditis, Guillain-Barré syndrome, etc.).

It remains to know what are “an adverse effect of severe or severe intensity” and an “multidisciplinary medical consultation”. In any case, the information does not seem to have circulated correctly in the medical community since neither Mrs. X’s trainee doctor nor her surgeon husband seem to be aware of the fact that the list is non-exhaustive….

136 million doses injected, 137,400 victims of adverse effects

“Are there really 24% serious adverse effects? asks Councilor Mathieu Hérondart. This time, it is Etienne Gayat Medical Advisor of the COVID Cabinet at the Ministry of Health who answers. His figures are much less spectacular. “Of the 136 million doses injected in France, there are 137,400 victims of adverse effects, ie a rate of 0.025% and it is on this proportion that there are a quarter of serious adverse effects. It is therefore a low risk. As for the usefulness of the third dose against Omicron, the protection against contamination is weaker, of the order 75/80% but the complete three-dose regimen still offers more than 90% protection against severe forms”.

The lawyer on the advice, Me Ludwig Prigent, returns to the charge on the exemptions: the list is too restrictive, he assures, he proposes to explain it in writing. Moreover, with regard to the effectiveness and therefore the proportionality of the obligation to 3edose, the lawyer believes that the population concerned, all those over 18, is much too large since it largely concerns people who have very little risk of developing a serious form.

“I can’t put myself in danger when I have three children”

It is the applicant’s turn to explain herself. The audience in the room is thin, less than 10 people, but we understand that she does not want to dwell on the intimate disorders she has suffered, especially since she is surrounded by men. The written file includes all explanations and certificates. She specifies that if she is there, it is because her case does not enter into the causes of exemption from the Cerfa form, so that her doctor could not attest to any contraindication concerning her. “I no longer have a vaccination pass, so I can no longer access the library to work, which has a huge impact on my university year. This situation is about to ruin my family life, I cannot put myself in danger when I have three children, so I have to stop my medical studies”.

The adviser turns again to government officials to hear their version of the need for the 3edose for everyone over 18. The median age of people currently suffering from serious forms is 36 years old, replies Etienne Gayat, which means that Omicron affects younger people, moreover, even if there are fewer serious forms, there are still 4000 people in intensive care.

“Why don’t we take serology into account, especially since the recall goes from 7 to 4 months, asks Me Delphine Provencemy client has a high antibody level, we would like to hear the explanations on the fact that these samples are not taken into account “. The ace ! Mathieu Hérondart recalls that this choice is that of the legislator and therefore outside the scope of the contested decree.

Once again, Charles Touboul ensures that the list of contraindications appearing in the appendix to the decree of 1er June applies to the 3e dose, that it is not limiting, and that it is therefore possible to obtain your vaccination pass without doing the booster, provided that you can justify a “severe or serious” side effect observed. It is, he explains, the reason why the text precedes the pathologies with an “for example” and completes their enumeration with an ellipsis.

It is 11:10 a.m., the adviser considers himself sufficiently informed. The closing of the investigation is postponed for 24 hours to allow the parties to exchange additional arguments. The order is announced for the end of the week. The decision will be all the more interesting as the file raises an interesting question of inequality between men and women in the face of compulsory vaccination. The gynecological disorders invoked may not be serious, as the ANSM maintains, but they can sometimes be very disabling when they result in bleeding and not without consequences for the general state of health.

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