Military Service Members With Natural Immunity File Lawsuit Against DOD, FDA, HHS Over COVID Vaccine Mandate

(The Defender) Two active duty members of the U.S. Armed Forces on Aug. 17 filed a lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD), U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) on behalf of themselves and 220,000 active service members who are being forced to get a COVID vaccine despite having had COVID and acquired natural immunity to SARS-CoV-2.

The lead plaintiffs in the lawsuit, Staff Sergeant Daniel Robert and Staff Sergeant Holli Mulvihill, allege U.S. Sec. of Defense Lloyd Austin ignored the DOD’s own regulations and created an entirely new definition of “full immunity” as being achievable only by vaccination.

According to the lawsuit, the military’s existing laws and regulations unequivocally provide the exemption the plaintiffs seek under Army Regulation 40-562 (“AR 40-562”), which provides documented survivors of an infection a presumptive medical exemption from vaccination because of the natural immunity acquired as a result of having survived the infection.

Under the military’s regulations (AR 40-562, ¶2-6a.(1)(b):

“General examples of medical exemptions include the following … Evidence of immunity based on serologic tests, documented infection or similar circumstances.”

According to the lawsuit, Dr. Admiral Brett Giroir, HHS assistant secretary, stated in an interview Aug. 24 with Fox News: “So natural immunity, it’s very important … There are still no data to suggest vaccine immunity is better than natural immunity. I think both are highly protective.”

Yet on the same day, Austin issued a memo mandating the entire Armed Forces be vaccinated, in which he wrote:

“Those with previous COVID-19 infection are not considered fully vaccinated.”

In that memo, plaintiffs allege Austin created a new term and concept, which contradicts  the plain language of DOD’s own regulations, long-standing immunology practice, medical ethics and the overwhelming weight of scientific evidence regarding this specific virus.

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