GRAND RAPIDS, Michigan (LifeSiteNews) — A Michigan family filed a federal lawsuit against a hospital that is allegedly barring their adopted daughter from getting a much-needed kidney transplant due to her COVID-19 vaccination status.
Jenna Campau, the adoptive mother of 17-year-old Ukrainian girl Alisa, decided to pursue legal action after Spectrum Health and Helen Devos Children’s Hospital in Grand Rapids allegedly refused to put Alisa on the wait list for a kidney transplant because she was not vaccinated against the coronavirus due to religious objections to the shots.
According to the lawsuit, the hospital’s vaccination policies “effectively require the Plaintiff to either violate her religious beliefs or deny her daughter life-saving medical care.”
— WeThePatriotsUSA (@WTPatriotsUSA) May 13, 2022
Diagnosed with renal failure, Alisa is on twice-a-week dialysis treatments to keep her single remaining kidney functioning, making getting a transplant a matter of urgency.
Despite the critical nature of the situation, however, hospital officials have reportedly refused to allow Alisa to take a spot on the wait list because she hasn’t received the experimental COVID-19 injections, which are part of the required regimen for receiving a transplant.
Campau told LifeSiteNews in a phone interview late last month that the effort to get Alisa on the wait list is rapidly nearing a crucial deadline.
“If we’re going to move forward with a transplant, she really needs to get on the pediatric list before she turns 18 in July, because the wait time is much shorter for those who are able to get on the pediatric list,” the girl’s adoptive mother said.
While the median wait time for adults to get a kidney transplant is 3.6 years, according to the National Kidney Foundation, Campau said her daughter could get a new kidney in mere months if she is able to get on the pediatric wait list before she turns 18.
Desperate to get Alisa the care she urgently needs, Campau got in touch with nonprofit organization We The Patriots USA co-founded by attorney Brian Festa, which set up a fundraiser page and connected the family with outside legal counsel.
Donate to help the Campau family fight to obtain a life-saving transplant for their daughter here
On May 13, attorneys Norm Pattis and Christopher DeMatteo of Pattis & Smith, along with local Michigan counsel attorney James A. Thomas, filed a federal lawsuit in the Western District of Michigan, naming Jenna Campau as the plaintiff.
In an email to LifeSiteNews on Wednesday, Festa said the lawsuit was filed even though the family hasn’t yet reached their funding goal of $50,000, “because there is no time to waste for this girl.”
“With end stage renal disease, it is critical that she be placed on the high-priority pediatric transplant list before she turns 18 on July 15th,” Festa explained.
In order to receive a kidney transplant, Alisa Campau must receive not only a covid vaccine, but also #Gardasil for HPV.
— WeThePatriotsUSA (@WTPatriotsUSA) May 17, 2022
Campau and her family have been racing against time in an effort to resolve the vaccination conflict in order to get their daughter on the transplant wait list.
According to the lawsuit, Campau voiced her religious objections to the mandated jabs on multiple occasions between 2021 and 2022, reaching out to resident physician Sammy Dia, M.D., nephrologist Jason Thomas, M.D., and Hospital Social Worker Phoebe Bell.
In March 2022, Rosemary Olivo, M.D., allegedly told Campau that the hospital’s transplant team would normally meet with the facility’s ethics department to discuss options if a patient refused to get required vaccinations.
However, “[a]lthough the Plaintiff has made repeated requests for exceptions to the pre-transplant vaccine requirements, as of the filing of this Complaint, the Hospital has not considered them,” the lawsuit states.
The lawsuit explained that Jenna Campau and her husband “object to the requested vaccinations on religious grounds.”
“Due to their religious beliefs, they are opposed to any vaccine or other medical product that is produced or researched using aborted fetal cells and also genetic modifications or therapies that involve combing human and cells or DNA,” the suit added, noting that “the three COVID-19 vaccines available in the United States are produced using aborted fetal cells.”
In a press release issued Friday, We The Patriots USA stated, “Among other things, the lawsuit seeks judgments declaring that the hospital violated the law by denying Alisa a religious accommodation; a permanent injunction prohibiting the hospital from requiring the shots as a condition of Alisa being evaluated for the transplant, being placed on the transplant list, or receiving the transplant; and monetary damages.”
In a Wednesday email to LifeSite, Festa said that in addition to securing life-saving treatment for Alisa, the “goal is to set a precedent for all Americans in need of life-saving medical care.”
According to Festa, the precedent the nonprofit supporting the family hopes to set is “one that will ensure that no one may ever be denied medical assistance simply because they refused a shot or other medical intervention on the basis of their sincerely-held religious beliefs.”
Donations to the Campau’s legal fund may be made at https://wethepatriotsusa.org/donate-transplant-lawsuit/