The Las Vegas Review-Journal reported Wednesday that the board will also consider discontinuing local advertising for COVID-19 and flu vaccines, pending further investigation and results of the Florida Supreme Court case to investigate the wrongdoing related to COVID-19 vaccines.
The move comes after Florida's Republican Governor, Ron DeSantis, requested last month that the Florida Supreme Court convene a grand jury to investigate any possible side effects of COVID-19 vaccines and to get more information from pharmaceutical companies. This move has sparked concern and criticism from public health experts who argue that vaccines are safe and effective in preventing the spread of COVID-19.
The agenda for the meeting cites the concerns of residents who raised possible problems with vaccines such as heart problems and inflammation. However, Jon Karr, an Elko County Board of Health commissioner, has stated that he thinks these agenda items never should have been put on the agenda and resulted from a miscommunication.
“We’ve already been notified by legal that we don’t have the authority to issue a moratorium,” Karr said. “I believe it’s just a miscommunication, and I’m hoping it gets tabled indefinitely.”
This decision by the Elko County Board of Health to consider a moratorium on COVID-19 and flu vaccines will inevitably be met with controversy, with public health officials already urging the board to reconsider their decision.
Delmo Andreozzi, another commissioner on the Elko Board of Health, also believes the board lacks the authority to issue a moratorium on administering COVID-19 vaccines.
“We do not regulate or have any direct oversight of the health care industry,” Andreozzi said in an email, adding that the board of health could ban the expenditure of any county resources or its own advertising for vaccines. “As I am only one board member, I can only speak for myself. It is my own personal belief that an individual’s health care decisions should only be made in consultation with that individual’s own medical provider for ANY and ALL health care matters.”
Meanwhile, the Nevada Department of Health and Human Services immunization program encourages Nevadans to speak with their doctor or healthcare provider about vaccinations.
“Throughout the pandemic, much has been learned, and information is available for individuals to make the best choices to protect their health and the health of their families,” said Marissa Medeiros, public information officer for the state’s immunization program, told the Journal.