Partygoers suffering from long covid after ‘dancing with Janssen' can sue gov’t: Urgenda
Young people who attended events shortly after receiving the one-shot Janssen Covid-19 vaccine came forward and said feel that they were put in an unsafe situation and were not clearly informed of the risks by the government. Health Minister Hugo de Jonge had encouraged as many young people as possible to get vaccinated by saying they can go ‘dancing with Janssen’ immediately after receiving the shot.
Several young people said they had not been aware that the vaccine is only fully effective 14 days after injection. “I knew I could be at risk, but had I known the risk was this high I would never have gone out”, one partygoer stated. “I felt like it was safe in the beginning and not that it was just about getting young people to take a shot. I blame him for that”, another young man said about De Jonge’s statements.
Lawyer for the non-profit foundation Urgenda, Marijn Kingma said to Nieuwsuur that if young people develop long covid due to going out directly after being vaccinated, they should be able to sue the government. “I would dare to take such a case. They can call me”, Kingma stated.
Kingma said she holds the government responsible to provide the necessary information about risks and that, in this case, the health minister's statements mislead them.
On the website of the Ministry of Health, it is stated that the vaccine only offers full protection after two weeks. Nonetheless, on July 1 a spokesperson of the ministry told NOS that people were well protected enough that it had been “responsible” to allow them direct access to events.
Similar to other Covid-19 vaccines, the Janssen vaccine offers optimal protection two weeks after injection. De Jonge initially believed it was viable to allow freshly vaccinated people entry to events without testing. A two-week waiting period was later installed. At the end of June, an additional 175 thousand Janssen vaccines were ordered to vaccinate the young population. Compared to other Covid-19 vaccines, such as Pfizer and BioNTech that have an efficiency rate above 90 percent, the Janssen vaccine was said to offer 67 percent protection.