Spanish judge orders elderly person to be vaccinated despite daughter’s refusal

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Madrid | A Spanish judge ordered a resident of a geriatric center to be vaccinated against COVID-19 despite her daughter’s refusal, in a decision made public on Wednesday by the court of Santiago de Compostela (north-west).

The retirement home had appealed to the guard on Saturday, before the categorical refusal of the daughter of a resident to see her mother vaccinated, and this while the latter had “a very limited decision-making capacity”.

In his judgment, the magistrate considers that the resident “lacks specific faculties to give consent to a medical act”. Although he understands his daughter’s reservations about the possible side effects of the vaccine, he judges that vaccinating her is “a lower risk” than doing nothing.

The position of the resident’s daughter “goes against the interests of the resident concerning the maintenance of her state of health and the avoidance of vital risks”, continues the judge.

He stresses that his decision is based solely on the interests of the resident and not on all residents, given that the vaccination campaign in Spain is carried out on a voluntary basis and that no one can be forced to receive the injection in reason that it would benefit the community.

Like most European countries, Spain began the vaccination campaign at the end of December, starting with employees and residents of retirement homes, where thousands of elderly people have been killed by the virus.

Spaniards generally have a relatively high vaccine acceptance rate, but in the case of COVID-19, some reluctance remains, with 62% of people willing to be vaccinated, according to an Ipsos Global Advisor study conducted in 15 countries.

France appears to be the most resistant country there, with only 40% of people inclined to be vaccinated and China as the country being the most favorable, with 80% of those polled willing to do so.

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