As he lay dying of Covid-19 in a hospital in central Romania, a young man confessed to medical staff that his vaccine certificate was actually a fake.
Medics at the intensive care unit in the County Hospital in Sibiu haven’t provided many details about the case. But they are using it as a warning to others with false vaccine documents, or are thinking about going down that route.
Romania has one of the lowest vaccine uptakes in the European Union. Only one-third of eligible people are vaccinated.
Most of the Covid-19 deaths are unvaccinated people. On Tuesday, 252 patients succumbed to the virus. Some 238 of those hadn’t had a jab.
“Before he lost the battle against Covid, he said he had a certificate. But he hadn’t actually been immunized,” unit manager Ioana Codru told Agerpres news agency on Tuesday.
False vaccine passes
Romania’s Interior Minister Lucian Bode said in September that authorities are probing 400 people on suspicion of issuing false Covid-19 certificates.
The medic said the hospital had treated other patients who’d „traveled through Europe with false vaccine passes. In the end, they admitted it, they told us spontaneously,” she added.
“One of those patients actually died and unfortunately he was young,” she said. She was responding to questions about the most challenging aspect of a new deadly fourth wave that has seen new cases skyrocket to a record 15,037 on Tuesday.
Medics have appealed to people who provide fake certificates to think about the person’s family and the risk of them dying if they catch the virus.
„I don’t know how these certificates were obtained, but those that hand them out should take a deep breath, put themselves in the family’s shoes and think twice,” she added.
She said almost all the patients currently in intensive care were unvaccinated.
“Patients who are immunized usually do better in ICU, and those that died had serious underlying illnesses and are generally elderly.”
“We have patients who are hospitalized and asking for vaccines,” she said. “We tell them that once they are in intensive care, there’s no preventive measure that can be taken.”