Alberta Court of Appeal dismisses unvaccinated woman's case for organ donation

EDMONTON — Alberta’s Court of Appeal has dismissed the case of a woman who was unable to get an organ transplant because she refused to take a COVID-19 vaccine.

Annette Lewis was diagnosed with a terminal disease in 2018 and was told she would not survive unless she received an organ transplant.

She was placed on a transplant waitlist in 2020, but was told a year later she would need to get the vaccine to receive an organ.

Lewis argued the vaccine requirement violates her right to life, but the Court of Appeal ruling says it is part of her medical treatment for people seeking an organ transplant.

She can refuse the vaccine, the ruling says, but there are consequences that flow from that decision.

The ruling says her charter rights were not breached by requiring vaccination against COVID-19 during the pandemic.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 8, 2022.

The Canadian Press