Regarding 31-year-old DJ Ferguson's story, Dr. Christine Toevs of the Christian Medical & Dental Associations recently told American Family Radio's "Today's Issues" program she was not surprised by the hospital's protocol for transplants.
"When you receive an organ transplant from another human being, your body inherently wants to reject that organ because it's not part of you," said Dr. Toevs. "So when you receive a transplant, they give you massive doses of immunosuppression drugs in order to prevent you from rejecting that organ, and it makes you really profoundly at risk of every infection in the entire world."
Toevs said it is a huge concern in the world of transplants.
"We want to prevent the organ from being rejected, but we also want to try to prevent terrible infections from occurring," Dr. Toevs continued. "COVID is running rampant through the communities and through the hospitals and those types of things, so the hospital has decided that the COVID vaccine prevents serious illness and hospitalization. And if you look at the recommendations for vaccines and treatments for COVID, those who are immunosuppressed are at the very top of the list, regardless of age."
So Dr. Toevs understands and agrees with the policy.
"The problem with this case is that we don't have all the information," she added. "We're only going to hear his side and the family's side because by privacy law regulations, the hospital is not exactly allowed to tell us what their conversations were. It makes it really murky and great for headlines."
American Family News did contact Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston seeking comment and did not receive a response.
"We do everything we can to ensure that a patient who receives a transplanted organ has the greatest chance of survival," a spokesperson for the hospital told New York Post.
The hospital's policy requiring recipients to have the COVID-19 shot is in line with many other transplant programs across the US, the spokesperson added.
According to his father, DJ does not want to get COVID shot out of concerns the COVID-19 vaccine has caused serious heart problems, including enlargement of the heart -- known as myocarditis -- and blood clots.
"He is correct, but the people that he's talking about are the ones we're seeing on the news," Dr. Toevs noted. "The Olympic athletes, the soccer players in Europe -- very healthy people are developing some form of myocarditis and probably are not actually going to benefit from the vaccine. Several countries around the world have now said vaccines for young males under the age of 30 are not indicated because of the risk of myocarditis."
That, she added, is a fundamentally different situation from a man who is dying from a failing heart and is going to receive massive immunosuppression. Dr. Toevs said it is comparing apples and oranges.
"I understand how he is interpreting this and why he says that, but they're not the same situation," she assured AFR.