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Montevideo, March 22nd 2023 - 06:45 UTC



Uruguayan official says judge's ruling on vax was “nonsense”

Friday, July 8th 2022 - 09:47 UTC
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The Judiciary is accountable for what may happen to children with comorbidities who signed up for vaccination, Delgado argued The Judiciary is accountable for what may happen to children with comorbidities who signed up for vaccination, Delgado argued

Uruguay's Presidential Secretary Álvaro Delgado Thursday admitted that “rulings are obeyed, but they can be criticized and this ruling is nonsense.” He made those remarks after Surrogate Judge Alejandro Recarey ordered vaccination against COVID-19 of children aged under 13 years of age to be halted.

 Delgado also announced the Health Ministry (MSP) would appeal the magistrate's decision. “The government respects science and respects the Judiciary, that is why the MSP is suspending the voluntary vaccination of minors and the second thing we want to say is that we will undoubtedly appeal this ruling.”

The official also stressed that the ruling “puts on the Judiciary the responsibility of the possible health affectation of a number of minors in Uruguay who wanted to be vaccinated.” He added that 5,800 minors had signed up for their second doses of vaccine. “Many of them with comorbidities or medical prescriptions,” Delgado underlined.

“The first thing that the government is preparing in these hours is the immediate appeal of this court ruling,” he assured. ”Rulings are complied with, but they can be criticized and this ruling is nonsense (...) that dictates, among other things, in its rationale that the Vaccination Plan is illegal and unconstitutional and that the economic interests of private pharmaceutical companies weighed. For the government and the whole of Uruguay this argument is inadmissible,“ Delgado stressed.

He added that a judge suspending ”a vaccination that is voluntary worries us enormously against the opinion of science and against what is happening in the world,“ he went on.

Judge Recarey acquiesced to an injunction filed by lawyer Maximiliano Dentone and ordered all vaccinations within this age group be halted for 72 hours pending appeals. Anti-vaccine activists celebrated the measure at the court's doorsteps with signs reading ”hands off children.“

The magistrate ordered the MSP and the Uruguayan Presidency to publish in full all the purchase contracts for the purchase of vaccines with the Chinese pharmaceutical company Sinovac, the Anglo-Swedish AstraZeneca, and Pfizer of the United States.

He also requested that a text be penned to be given directly to minors under 13 years of age who want to be vaccinated, in which there is ”complete and clear“ information on the substances contained in each vaccine, their benefits, and risks, as well as the adverse effects ”already detected.“

Recarey, who is handling the case as the magistrate on duty during the Judiciary winter recess, also ruled that once these requirements are met he would agree to review the resumption of vaccinations.

The MSP announced on social media that vaccines for this age group will no longer be available ”until further notice,“ but insisted that ”each decision taken regarding the vaccination of the National Coronavirus Plan was based on the available scientific evidence.”

Vaccination is not mandatory in Uruguay, which in June 2021 became the first country in Latin America to vaccinate minors between the ages of 12 and 17, while in January 2022 began vaccinating children between the ages of 5 and 11.

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