The Royal New Zealand College of General Practitioners welcomes today’s announcement of the establishment of a centralised application process for vaccine exemption certificates.
College President Dr Samantha Murton (pictured right) says, "This process, along with the upcoming guidance from the Ministry of Health about vaccine exemption eligibility, will hopefully stop the undue pressures being put on our country’s GPs.
"We know that the uncertainty of COVID-19 brings stress, but it is unacceptable for patients to physically or verbally abuse, harass, or put pressure on their GP or any health practitioner in order to get a vaccine exemption certificate."
The College’s Medical Director Dr Bryan Betty says, "The College has been clear in advising members to not issue vaccine exemption certificates until the Ministry of Health clarifies the process and conditions that warrant an exemption.
"We expect the number of exemptions will be restricted to a very small group of people, but we will await the official guidance from the Ministry in the coming weeks.
"Trust your GP. We are vocationally trained specialists who are experts in their knowledge of vaccines and the benefits and risks that they provide for our communities," he says.