They had no choice. Aliea Bidwell and Ben Gray were blackmailed into consenting to the hepatitis B vaccine or else have their newborn baby taken away from them. Now they are planning to fight back against the vaccine blackmail with a lawsuit.
When The Inquisitr broke the news in March of this horrific story of bullying by Dr. Terry Bierd at St. Vincent’s Hospital of Birmingham, Alabama, the story struck to the heart of parents around the globe. The thought that a doctor could get away with so completely overriding parents’ decisions for a child who was not in any imminent danger both angered and frightened people.
Aliea and Ben’s baby was born on the morning of Friday, March 14, and the new family enjoyed the early hours with their newest member. That is, until the pediatrician burst into their hospital room and rocked their world. Dr. Terry Bierd is a neonatologist, but she served as the on-call pediatrician that day. Though the parents told the admitting nurse that they were refusing vaccines for the time, Dr. Bierd insisted that the baby be given the hepatitis B vaccine.
According to an interview on May 20 with FOX Business’ Kennedy on The Independents, Aliea said that Dr. Bierd told her that she had five minutes to make the decision about the vaccine. She later backtracked and gave them until 9 pm, before changing the timeline again to 8 pm, less than 12 hours after their baby had been born.
When Aliea told the doctor, from the very beginning, that she refused the vaccine for her newborn son, Dr. Bierd told her that it was a law that the baby have that vaccine. In fact, the hepatitis B vaccine is not mandated by law for any person in the state of Alabama.
When the parents continued to refuse the vaccine, based on their research prior to their baby’s birth, the doctor began threatening them, literally with blackmail. She told them several times over the course of the day that, if they did not submit, she would call security and child protective services and have their newborn baby taken away from them into custody. She told them that the baby would get the vaccine one way or another and that they could figure out how to get him back after the weekend. It was to be state-sanctioned kidnapping. And blackmail.
Kennedy of The Independents blasted the blackmail of the new mom, who was:
“in the most vulnerable state of your life, and some doctors act literally like predators, using the government as a tool to instill fear in you so you so you behave in a way that they think is appropriate. “
Others feel the same way. One mother, “Lin,” told The Inquisitr that the same hospital, St. Vincent’s of Birmingham, tried to blackmail them with threats of DHR (Alabama’s Child Protective Services), just a couple of years ago. When she wanted to check out early because she and the baby were both healthy, she was told that if she did, DHR would be called. That family called their bluff and checked out, stating that they would bring their baby back if there were any health problems that developed. None did. She wants people to be aware that some hospitals do this type of coersion:
“because families shouldn’t be afraid to seek medical attention out of fear of Child Protective Services being called when they’ve done nothing wrong. There was no imminent danger.”
Several parents have contacted me off the record to tell me about their own blackmail stories from hospitals, some over vaccines, and some over other issues. None were over issues that involved any actual medical risk that their children were facing. But they spoke off the record out of fear of repercussions from Child Protective Services. They are scared of the “unchecked absolute power” that they hold.
The threats and medical blackmail seem to be increasing, and not just over vaccines. Recently The Inquisitr reported about a New York mother who is suing her hospital over being forced to undergo a cesarean section. As reported in that story, sometimes the threat of CPS is even being used to compel a mother to have a c-section, but such threats are “not the appropriate use of the child welfare system, which is designed to protect children from neglectful parents, according to Farah Diaz-Tello, a birth justice activist and staff attorney for National Advocates for Pregnant Women.
Like the mother in that story, Aliea Bidwell is pushing back against the medical bullying. She did eventually consent to the hepatitis B vaccine, but the “informed consent” form she signed was signed under duress. The fact that the hospital staff, including the nurse who administered the vaccine, knew that she did not want to sign it is a problem, according to Bidwell’s attorney, Chris Long.
A consent form that is signed under duress is “not worth the paper it’s written on.” The consent for the vaccine was obtained through coercion, and though the form is called “informed” consent, Dr. Bierd allegedly never told the parents any risks or side effects of the vaccine, including the basic risk of infection at the injection site. In fact, Aliea’s uncle, Keith Bidwell reports that it was the family members, aunts, uncles, grandparents, great-grandparents, who were present in the hospital room the second time Dr. Bierd came in who told the doctor of the risks of the hepatitis B vaccine. There are stories such as that of baby Ian, who was allegedly injured by the hepatitis B vaccine:
Keith and other relatives had their smartphones out, pulling up links to studies and cases of side effects from the vaccine. He says, “she refused to look at it; says it was a law.” She told them that they can’t believe everything they read on the internet, even though the vaccine package insert from Merck may be found online, here, which admits links of the vaccine to multiple sclerosis and other serious complications.
Because the vaccine recommendation of the Centers for Disease Control was quoted to Aliea and Ben as law, fraud is also alleged. It is not law. It is a recommendation. If recommendations actually carry the force of law, one has to wonder why the Constitution and guarantees of freedom exist at all. Why elect representatives to write or vote on legislation if recommendations by an un-elected organization compel compliance of all citizens?
When the nurse was called in to give the vaccine, Aliea’s sister Anna reports that Aliea was crying and told the nurse that she didn’t want her baby to be given the vaccine, and that she signed the form under protest, to keep Dr. Bierd from taking her newborn baby away from her. The nurse allegedly stopped what she was doing, looked around the room, and was then told by the doctor in the room (not Bierd) to give the baby the vaccine.
The doctor left the room. Then, according to Anna, the nurse apologized, explaining that she wanted them all to know that she was not the bad guy. The next couple of nurses that came into the room also said that they were sorry that it happened. Another staff member told Ben and Aliea that this type of bullying had happened before by Dr. Bierd.
According to family members, Dr. Bierd cited “doctor’s discretion” in overriding the parents’ refusal of the vaccine. However, the concept of doctor’s discretion is designed only for use in emergency situations, when the patient is in imminent danger, when the patient is not in complete control of his or her mental faculties. It is to be used only for emergency life-saving treatment to stabilize the patient. This case meets none of those criteria.
Overriding a patients’ refusal for treatment (or parents’ refusal in the case of a minor) in absence of an emergency or life-threatening situation, in the legal world, constitutes battery, which is defined by the Findlaw Legal Dictionary as “the crime or tort of intentionally or recklessly causing offensive physical contact or bodily harm (as by striking or by administering a poison or drug) that is not consented to by the victim.”
Many readers have wanted to know why the couple did not just leave the hospital with their baby, without the vaccine. Legally, they likely could have left AMA – against medical advice. However, in the real world, this couple had been led to believe that security would be called on them if they tried to leave, which could have resulted in their being jailed. In that scenario, the baby would certainly have been taken into custody, and not only given the hepatitis B vaccine, but all the other vaccines as well while in state custody. Aliea was already breastfeeding her baby, and a separation would have greatly interfered with that, if not halted it altogether. The infant would have been fed formula all weekend, which was unacceptable to the baby’s parents.
FOX‘s Kennedy and “Lin” expressed similar concerns about the blackmail with the threat to have Child Protective Services kidnap the baby. Do they truly believe that it is more dangerous to the baby for the parents to refuse the vaccine, or make an otherwise non-mainstream decision, than it is for a newborn baby to be taken away from the parents who love him and “put them in someone else’s custody? Who knows what could happen?”
The family has set up a website and is now accepting donations to help offset legal expenses.
Do you agree or disagree? Is it ultimately the parents who have the right and responsibility to make decisions for their children, including in regards to vaccines, or have we lost that freedom as well? Is the lawsuit a good thing? Is it acceptable for medical professionals to use the threat of legally-sanctioned kidnapping by Child Protective Services to bully people into compliance with their recommendations? Or is it time to reign in this medical tyranny and put a stop to things like forced c-sections and vaccine blackmail?
[Images via Facebook and bing]