Executive Director of the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons Dr. Jane Orient (pictured), who Democrats label a conspiracy theorist, is the lead witness for a Senate hearing on at-home coronavirus treatment
Dr. Jane Orient is the executive director of the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons, a group focused on keeping the government out of medicine and who feel federal vaccine mandates are a violation of human rights.
She has also pushed anti-malaria drug hydroxychloroquine as an effective treatment for coronavirus.
Orient told The New York Times on Sunday that she rejects the label of anti-vaxxer, but said she would not be getting the coronavirus vaccine once it’s released because she has an autoimmune condition.
She also says she opposes the government’s push for all Americans to be vaccinated.
The Columbia University educated doctor noted that both vaccine candidates — one made by Pfizer and the other by Moderna — use a new scientific method and said young people shouldn’t take it because potential effects on fertility have not been determined.
‘It seems to me reckless to be pushing people to take risks when you don’t know what the risks are,’ Orient said. ‘People’s rights should be respected. Where is ‘my body, my choice’ when it comes to this?’
The public doubt over taking a vaccine, as two with high effectiveness rates have been developed in the last month, comes as federal health officials continue to push rhetoric that the vaccine is a way to end the pandemic.
The hearing before the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, chaired by Senator Ron Johnson, will focus on early at-home treatment for COVID-19. Orient will argue Tuesday that anti-malaria drug hydroxychloroquine should be released from the national stockpile as a treatment.
Orient told the Times that it’s not enough for doctors to send patients home with instructions to rest and ride out the virus.
Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee Chairman Ron Johnson (pictured) invited Dr. Orient despite her skepticism of the coroanvirus vaccine
‘It seems to me reckless to be pushing people to take risks when you don’t know what the risks are. People’s rights should be respected. Where is ‘my body, my choice’ when it comes to this?’ Orient asked of the recently-developed Modern and Pfizer vaccines
Some Republicans agree with Orient, like Rep. Jeff Duncan of South Carolina who feels: ‘Americans should also have the freedom to decline the vaccine’
She also will use her time before the committee to urge the government to issue guidelines detailing to doctors hydroxychloroquine as a potential treatment for coronavirus patients.
The Food and Drug Administration revoked an emergency use authorization earlier this year allowing the anti-malaria drug to be distributed from the national stockpile in light of the pandemic. The agency has since then warned that its use could actually harm COVID-19 patients.
Orient, the group she leads and Republican leaders, including President Donald Trump, have touted hydroxychloroquine as a miracle ‘cure’ for coronavirus.
By inviting Orient to the stand, Republicans have prompted criticism from Democrats who claim she is a conspiracy theorist who should not have a platform.
‘At such a crucial time, giving a platform to conspiracy theorists to spread myths and falsehoods about COVID vaccines is downright dangerous and one of the last things Senate Republicans should be doing right now,’ Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said in a statement Sunday.
As of Monday morning, more than 14.7 million Americans have tested positive for COVID-19 and more than 282,000 have died from the virus. This means less than 0.02 per cent of those who contract the disease in the U.S. are dying from it.
Some Republicans have also voiced their concerns with government mandates on the coronavirus vaccine.
At the Tuesday hearing, Orient will tout anti-malaria drug hydroxychloroquine as an effective at-home treatment for COVID-19
‘Americans should have the freedom to take the COVID vaccine. Americans should also have the freedom to decline the vaccine,’ Representative Jeff Duncan of South Carolina wrote on Twitter Saturday.
The Republican Party seems to be at odds on this, however, as, according to a person familiar with the call, even the chief scientific adviser to Operation Warp Speed, Moncef Slaoui, said that ‘it would help if senators got vaccination.’
Trump’s daughter and senior advisor Ivanka Trump has also tweeted that she would take the shot on television to help boost public confidence in the vaccine.
The only living former Republican President George W. Bush also said he would take the vaccine on camera.