AN NHS worker has been left heartbroken after claiming she was forced to decide between keeping her job or having kids after refusing the Covid jab.
Suzanne Wilson, 34, was sacked after she turned down the vaccination after worrying that it would affect her IVF treatment.
The care home worker, from Gateshead, Tyneside, who has worked in the same place for 15 years, claims that she has no objection to the jab but is worried it might ruin her chances of having a baby.
According to the NHS and Royal College of Midwifery, there is no evidence that the jab has any effect on your chances to become pregnant.
The Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists also advise that women trying to become pregnant do not need to avoid pregnancy after vaccination and there is no evidence to suggest that COVID-19 vaccines will affect fertility.
Suzanne, who has been trying for a baby for six years, told The Mirror: “I understand the importance of the vaccine – my whole family is jabbed, and as soon as I have a baby, I’ll get it.
“But my doctor can’t say categorically it won’t stop me conceiving, so I’m not prepared to take the risk.
“They don’t think it affects fertility, but ‘don’t think’ isn’t good enough.
“For me, having a baby is more important than anything, so it’s come down to losing my job because of it.”
Suzanne was tested regularly for Covid and followed protection controls at Hebburn Court during the pandemic, and had worked there since she was 19.
She has now been made jobless because of her decision, and is relying on her partner Stephen’s tree surgeon wage.
She said:“My managers have been very supportive but their hands are tied. Nothing could be done.
“The impact is going to be huge. We are already in a care crisis.
“All I have done is cry all day. I’ve put my life into this home. Some residents were crying when I told them I was leaving.
“Family members who visit the homes don’t have to be double-jabbed yet I’m banished despite being head-to-toe in protective gear.
“Until someone can tell me the jab doesn’t affect fertility 100%, I just can’t do it.”
NHS ADVICE ON FERTILITY & PREGNANCY
Advice on the Government website, along with the NHS, states that vaccination is the “best way to protect against the known risks” of covid for both women and babies.
The vaccine is considered to be safe and effective at any stage of pregnancy, and women can discuss the benefits and risks with a healthcare professional if they wish.
Women who find out they are pregnant after their first dose do not need to delay their second dose, and should also receive a booster dose.
However a key cause of vaccine hesitancy amongst young women is the fear of damage to fertility, despite official advice and studies.
The couple are awaiting IVF through the NHS currently, with Suzanne saying that her bosses had tried to be supportive.
Suzanne added: “I’ve offered to take a back role, do testing every day and wear every bit of PPE available but it’s not good enough.
“Homes are interviewing for staff and no one’s turning up – and if you can earn more on an Aldi till, why would you?
“Working in care is demanding. You have to be devoted to it.”
It comes as NHS bosses fear a staff disaster during the winter with 120,000 job vacancies already crippling the sector.
Most English NHS staff, 89 per cent, have been double jabbed but there are still 8 per cent who have not been vaccinated.
Rachel Harrison, national officer for the GMB union, said: “Most NHS and care workers have been vaccinated. Of those who haven’t, most of them have legitimate, often heartbreaking reasons why.
“Giving these workers a no-jab no-job ultimatum is heartless. If we want more people to take the vaccine, they should be educated and reassured, not bullied.”