The principle of informed consent is foundational to all medical disciplines. It is required learning in every medical training program and part of every medical code of ethics. Informed consent has been described by experts in several different ways, but consistently contains three common elements: disclosure, capacity and voluntariness.
Disclosure requires a full, clear statement of the risks and benefits. Capacity requires an ability to understand the choice and make a decision. Voluntariness requires the absence of coercion or duress.
Stating that someone’s employment will be terminated or modified if they do not allow a medical procedure to be performed on their body is a form of duress, and therefore violates the basic medical principle of informed consent.
We, the undersigned, believe that standard medical ethics and Pennsylvania law require that all individuals be given the opportunity to exercise informed consent with respect to the COVID-19 vaccines.
We, the undersigned, believe that no employer, school or governmental entity should mandate the administration of any COVID-19 vaccines, which is contrary to the basic principle of informed consent.
Diversity of thought is a proud hallmark of our culture. Even the best aspirations toward unity need not stifle the unique aspects of any one individual’s personal conscience.
We formally request that Penn Medicine, its affiliates and subsidiaries do not pursue their stated COVID-19 vaccine mandate.