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Class Action lawsuit cites regulatory failures over Covid vaccines
The action filed today in the Federal Court of Australia
The Therapeutic Goods Administration did not fulfill their duty to properly regulate the Covid vaccines, resulting in harm and damage to Australians, argues a Class Action lawsuit filed today in the Federal Court of Australia.
The action is seeking compensation on behalf of Covid vaccine-injured Australians for damages and losses sustained.
Over 500 injured Covid vaccine-injured Australians, many of whom have suffered life-altering adverse events, have now expressed interest in the action, as have family members of Australians who died after receiving the vaccine.
On Monday, members of the vaccine-injured community and advocates, including Liberal Democrats MLC John Ruddick, attended the Federal Courthouse in Sydney, NSW, in a meeting of solidarity and support prior to the filing of the action today.
Failure to properly regulate the Covid vaccines
The Class Action seeks to hold the TGA to account for alleged, “negligence, breach of statutory duty and misfeasance in public office” in its failure to properly approve and monitor the Covid vaccines, resulting in harms to Australians.
Class Action respondents include, but are not limited to, the Australian Government, the Department of Health and Aged Care Secretary Dr Brendan Murphy, and the Former Deputy Secretary of Health Products Regulation Group Adjunct Professor John Skerritt.
The action was filed by Brisbane law firm NR Barbi Solicitor on behalf of Lead Applicants Gareth O'Gradie, Antonio Derose, and Anthony Rose. The Lead Applicants are representing the Covid vaccine-injured across all Australian jurisdictions who have suffered loss and damage as a result of being injected with one or more of the Covid vaccines.
National compensation scheme not fit for purpose
Dr Melissa McCann, GP at the Whitsunday Family Practice, instigated the action and has initiated a crowdfunding campaign to assist in funding legal expenses. She says that a Class Action is needed because the compensation scheme has failed vaccine-injured Australians:
“The Services Australia covid vaccine claims scheme is not fit for purpose. Australians were promised a fair and accessible compensation scheme. Many vaccine-injured Australians who cannot access compensation through the Services Australia scheme now find themselves abandoned, with no support.”
The Services Australia claims scheme is complicated and difficult to qualify for. A recent review of the scheme in The Australian revealed that only 126 out of 3,395 claims made to the scheme so far have been approved. 2,357 claims are in progress, 562 have been rejected, and 350 have been withdrawn.
Real people, real lives: The faces of Covid vaccine harm in Australia
Several of the vaccine-injured registered in this action have shared their stories with Instagram archive project, Jab Injuries Australia (JIA). 37-year-old Sydney mum Mel, pictured above in the yellow wheelchair, shared her story on the page earlier this year. After three Pfizer shots, Mel told JIA, “I’m now disabled and have severe debilitating pain. I regret taking these vaccines every day of my life.”
Should the action be successful, financial compensation will assist in covering some of Mel’s treatment costs - she has spent tens of thousands of dollars on treatments so far. But more than that, Mel wants justice:
“We were lied to and manipulated. We all rolled up our sleeves thinking these vaccines were safe and effective. I believe in science, but cherry picking data is not science, coercion is not science, censorship is not science. We’ve been abandoned by the system, so we need justice. At the end of the day, I just want my health back. I’m depleted emotionally, physically, and financially. My life has been ruined because I tried to do the right thing, and no one is taking accountability for it.”
A parent who attended the courthouse on Monday is Raelene, mother of Caitlin Gotze. 23-year-old Caitlin died shortly after her second Pfizer vaccination, which she got because it was mandated for her job, in 2021. Caitlin was bedridden for four days after the second shot, developing severe shortness of breath and malaise in the following weeks. Six weeks later, Caitlin went to the emergency department and was given a ventilator and steroids. Three days after this, she was found dead in her car at the Toowoomba horse racing stables where she worked.
“I was at home mowing the lawn when I noticed several missed calls from Caitlin’s employer. I called back and was told that the ambulance was with Caitlin and I needed to get there right away. Caitlin worked an hour away. When I arrived, there was an ambulance and police there and Caitlin was lying on the footpath, dead, with a syringe in her chest.”
Six months after Caitlin’s death, the Queensland Coroner officiated the cause of death as asthma. However, Caitlin never had asthma. Raelene is taking steps to have the investigation into Caitlin’s death reopened. “Where there is risk there must be choice. Cailtin had no choice, she had no informed consent,” says Raelene. “I want to see accountability. I want the government to take responsibility for the immeasurable harm they’ve caused.” (Follow Justice4Caitlin on Facebook.)
Joining the Class Action
“Australians who have experienced a serious adverse event following COVID-19 vaccination are invited to step forward and register for this Class Action,” says instructing solicitor Natalie Strijland of NR Barbi Solicitor.
Eligible Group Members include those who have suffered a serious adverse event1 either partly or wholly by reason of the Covid injection.
Dr Melissa McCann says she is “very confident” that the case has been filed in a manner that “does justice to the scale and public importance of the action.” It’s now over to the Federal Court to decide whether the TGA will be held to account.
Crowdfunding for the action is ongoing. Find out more about the Class Action and the crowdfunding campaign below.
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Serious adverse events include:
A life-threatening event;
An event which requires in-patient hospitalisation;
An event which resulted in persistent or significant disability or incapacity, including: permanent impairment of a body function or permanent damage to a body structure;
An event which necessitated medical or surgical intervention to prevent permanent impairment of a body function or permanent damage to a body structure;
An event causing a congenital anomaly, birth defect or stillbirth;
A medically important event;
An event that made one or more of the outcomes above more likely;
Or was an event that required intervention to prevent one or more of the above outcomes, including events that required intensive treatment in an emergency department or at home but did not result in hospitalisation.