SCOTUS Ruling on Health Care Vaccine Mandate a ‘Big Mistake,’ Stanford Professor Says

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The U.S. Supreme Court ruling on Thursday allowing the Biden administration to continue mandating COVID-19 vaccines for most health care workers is “really unfortunate” and a “big mistake” from a health policy perspective, said Dr. Jay Bhattacharya a professor at the Stanford University School of Medicine.

Bhattacharya, a senior scholar of Brownstone Institute, told The Epoch Times the ruling presents a situation that is “FUBAR,” a military slang term that stands for “[expletive] up beyond all repair.”

“That’s what this is, right? This is FUBAR,” he said, adding, “From a health policy perspective, from a public health perspective, it is a big mistake.”

The Supreme Court on Thursday let stand a vaccination requirement for health care workers at places that receive funding from Medicare or Medicaid—this accounts for about 10.4 million workers at 76,000 health care facilities as well as home health care providers, according to the federal government, down from the over 17 million it originally said. The mandate has medical and religious exemptions, but does not include opt-outs for people who developed natural immunity from having previously contracted COVID-19, nor opt-outs by submitting to weekly testing.

Bhattacharya said the SCOTUS ruling is “really unfortunate,” and likely to create labor shortages in American hospitals for the foreseeable future. “It’s already the case that there’s a reduction in staff hospital beds—tens of thousands—and that’s because they’ve lost so many workers in hospitals. [Health care workers] left because they didn’t want the vaccine.”

A ‘Real Strange Situation’

The professor said there are two aspects that amount to what he calls a “real strange situation.”

Firstly, many health care workers who left due to the vaccine mandates are “COVID-recovered, because they’ve worked for the frontlines [for] all of 2020,” Bhattacharya said, adding that these people are “better protected against transmitting the disease than the vaccinated.”

“If you’re already naturally immune and don’t have the vaccine, you’re better protected against infection and transmission than someone that’s just vaccinated but not naturally immune,” according to Bhattacharya.

A study from Israel posted in early December 2021, which is yet to be peer-reviewed, suggested that the immunity that people have after recovering from COVID-19 is better than the protection from vaccination.

Peer-reviewed research from Qatar in late November, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, suggested that unvaccinated people who recovered from COVID-19 have little risk of getting reinfected.

The Brownstone Institute has compiled a list of 146 research studies it says demonstrate that “naturally acquired immunity is equal to or more robust and superior to existing vaccines.”

By Mimi Nguyen Ly

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