By Jessie Zhang
In light of a court case launched by a group of doctors challenging the Queensland government’s COVID-19 vaccination mandates, records have revealed that the first deaths in the Australian state were individuals who were fully vaccinated.
A list of the state’s first 183 COVID-19 deaths from the pandemic’s start on March 13, 2020, until Jan. 27, 2022, produced by Queensland’s chief health officer in an affidavit, indicates it was known to authorities as early as Jan. 2022 that the vaccines may not be preventing deaths.
The list shows that the first locally acquired COVID-19 death was one in their 80s and another in their 30s, with both having received two doses of the vaccine in December 2021 and January 2022, respectively.
While Queensland recorded seven deaths early in the pandemic, these cases were acquired outside of the state and before vaccine rollouts began.
Queensland’s border opened in December 2021 after 80 percent of the state population vaccination was reached. By Dec. 31, 2021, nearly 90 percent of the population over 16 were fully vaccinated.
Queensland’s Workplace Mandates
The case, which was launched against the state, calls for the September 2021 directive requiring employees in public health and aged-care facilities to be vaccinated against COVID-19 to be revoked.
A specialist from the case, psychiatrist Peter Parry, said that in the three decades of his career, he had never been subject to disciplinary action until now.
“I graduated from medical school 40 years ago and in all that time have never had a single complaint about me presented to a medical board or AHPRA,” he said.
The reason he chose to decline the COVID-19 vaccines was because these are “not normal vaccines.”
“We hope, by bringing evidentiary material and expert witness testimonies before the Supreme Court, that the Justices will look at the evidence and rule in our favour. If successful, large numbers of experienced nurses, allied health, and doctors will be able to return to assist an overstretched Queensland public health system,” he added.
In addition to enforced work mandates, Premier Annastacia Palazczuk barred the unvaccinated from accessing services and freedoms such as hospitals, disability services, aged care, libraries, and hospitality venues.
This was enforced by proof of vaccination requirements at venues, which the Queensland government said was to keep Queenslanders safe.
Messaging Shifts to Reducing Severe Illness
Initially, in 2021, the Queensland Government closed the state’s borders and encouraged people to get vaccinated against COVID-19. They aimed to reopen the borders once 80 percent of the population was vaccinated, with the goal of stopping the virus’s spread and safeguarding vulnerable citizens.
However, when the borders reopened after reaching the target, COVID-19 cases surged instead of decreasing. When it became clear that the vaccines didn’t entirely prevent infection or transmission, the focus of the messaging shifted to highlight the vaccines’ effectiveness in reducing severe illness and death.
It is still a condition today for most Queensland health staff to be vaccinated against COVID-19 to ensure the ongoing safety of employees, patients, visitors and the wider community.
“The overwhelming benefits of COVID-19 vaccination continue to outweigh the potential risks, and this is substantiated by enormous amounts of safety data based on billions of doses worldwide,” a spokesperson for the TGA told The Epoch Times in an email.
Pfizer Dismisses Concerns Over Vaccine Mandates
The news of the deaths follows a parliamentary inquiry into the COVID-19 mandates heard from the Australian heads of Pfizer Australia that the vaccine mandates coerced Australians into getting vaccinated for COVID-19, saying they had a choice.
Appearing before an Australian senate inquiry into the COVID-19 vaccine mandates, Pfizer Country Medical Director Dr. Krishan Thiru and Dr. Brian Hewitt, the head of Regulatory Sciences for Pfizer, dismissed concerns of senators that Australians had been coerced into getting the COVID-19 vaccine.
“I believe firmly that nobody was forced to have a vaccine,” Dr. Thiru said.
“Mandates for vaccine requirements are determined by governments and health authorities. I believe everybody was offered an opportunity to get a vaccine or not get a vaccine. I don’t believe that anybody was forced to take a vaccine.”
Meanwhile, Dr. Hewitt, when asked if he believed Australians in states that were subject to large-scale mandates—like Western Australia or Victoria—were not forced into getting the shot even when they found they were unable to earn a living without receiving a vaccination, replied he did not believe mandates compelled individuals into vaccinating.
“The mandates for vaccine requirements are determined by governments and health authorities. I don’t believe that the mandates actually forced individuals to get vaccinations,” he said.
Victoria Kelly-Clark contributed to this report.