Manitoba family launches lawsuit over COVID-19 vaccination
A Manitoba family has launched a lawsuit alleging their 23-year-old son had a stroke days after receiving a dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, leaving him legally blind.
Jackson Troy Reimer and his parents are listed as the plaintiffs in a statement of claim filed earlier in March in the Court of King's Bench in Steinbach, the city where the Reimer family lives.
The claim says Reimer, 23 at the time the claim was filed, had been working at Vail Resorts in Whistler, B.C. in March 2021, when he received an email from his employer. The email, according to the claim, recommended employees living in staff housing take the AstraZeneca Vaccine at their first opportunity.
The claim says the email did not provide the warnings associated with the AstraZeneca Vaccine or COVISHIELD.
Reimer went to get the vaccine – either the AstraZeneca Vaccine or COVISHIELD, on March 17, 2021, from the Vancouver Coastal Health Authority at a conference centre in Whistler, the claim says.
Six days later, Reimer started experiencing dizziness, loss of vision and severe headaches, the claim says. He was taken to the Whistler Health Care Centre and then to the Vancouver General Hospital for a CT scan and a neurological assessment.
"The results of the CT scan showed that Jackson experienced an intracerebral haemorrhage, which is also known as a hemorrhagic stroke," the claim says, adding Reimer was transferred to the neurological intensive care unit where he became unresponsive and underwent a craniotomy to stop bleeding in his brain.
"The Plaintiffs claim that the stroke, the craniotomy and all symptoms and damages arising from them were caused as a result of Jackson having been administered the AstraZeneca Vaccine or COVISHIELD," the claim reads.
The claim says Reimer is now legally blind, has memory loss, brain seizures, excessive weight gain, loss of athletic ability, and obsessive-compulsive disorder tendencies, along with several other mental impairments and mental focus and concentration symptoms.
"Jackson's Symptoms continue to be so severe that he is unable to live alone, and requires ongoing assistance with daily activities," the claim reads, adding his symptoms are expected to continue indefinitely.
The statement of claim lists AstraZeneca Canada and Verity Pharmaceuticals (the manufacturer of COVISHIELD), along with Vail Resorts, the Vancouver Coastal Health Authority and the Attorney General of Canada as defendants in the lawsuit.
It claims, among other things, that the defendants negligently represented the safety of the AstraZeneca Vaccine and/or COVISHIELD, and owed a duty of care to accurately inform Reimer of all risks associated with the vaccines.
BENEFITS OUTWEIGH RISK OF 'EXTREMELY RARE POTENTIAL SIDE EFFECTS': ASTRAZENECA CANADA
In a statement to CTV News, a spokesperson for AstraZeneca Canada said, while they cannot comment on ongoing legal matters, AstraZeneca Canada records and assess all reports of potential adverse events associated with the use of Vaxzevria, AstraZeneca's COVID-19 vaccine.
"From the body of evidence in clinical trials and real-world data, Vaxzevria has continuously been shown to have an acceptable safety profile and regulators around the world consistently state that the benefits of vaccination outweigh the risks of extremely rare potential side effects," the statement reads, adding Health Canada granted the vaccine for Canada.
It said more than three billion doses have been supplied to more than 180 countries.
"Patient safety is our highest priority and regulatory authorities have clear and stringent standards to ensure the safe use of all medicines, including vaccines," the statement reads. "Our sympathy goes out to anyone who has reported health problems."
Health Canada told CTV News it has recently been made aware of the claim and is reviewing it.
The Vancouver Coastal Health Authority and Vail Resorts had no comment on the claim as it is before the courts.
CTV News has reached out to Verity Pharmaceuticals and is awaiting a response.
The allegations in the statement of claim have not been tested in court. As of Wednesday afternoon, no statements of defence had been filed.
Defendants served in Manitoba have 20 days to file a statement of defence. Those served in Canada or the U.S. have 40 days, while those served outside Canada and the U.S. have 60 days.
You can read the full statement of claim here.
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