Florida doctor Linda Marraccini, sent a letter to patients informing them that because the Pfizer vaccine has been approved for general use by the FDA, unvaccinated individuals will no longer be allowed at her practice.
"This is a public health emergency — the health of the public takes priority over the rights of any given individual in this situation," Marraccini wrote in the letter. "It appears that there is a lack of selflessness and concern for the burden on the health and well-being of our society from our encounters. "
Florida's 7-day average of new cases is the second highest of any state, and the state has the second-most people hospitalized with COVID-19.
Marraccini's will continue to see unvaccinated patients who have not found a new practice via telehealth visits, particularly those who need prescriptions or who have not received the vaccine due to hardships.
"We will no longer subject our patients and staff to unnecessary risk," Marraccini said, who will work with patients who have a valid medical reason for not receiving the vaccine.
Some have accused her of violating the Hippocratic oath, however, Marraccini says the oath also emphasizes prevention, as she has patients who are immunocompromised or undergoing chemotherapy and are therefore at higher risk.
Marraccini is also not the first doctor to refuse to treat unvaccinated patients, but Gov. Ron DeSantis signed a new law that bans business, government or educational entities from requiring people to prove their COVID-19 vaccination status. It is unclear whether the law will apply to Marraccini's medical practice.