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Mission CMO retracts statement that only unvaccinated died in COVID-19 upsurge
Thursday, 16 September 2021 19:28

From Staff Reports 

Mission Health’s chief medical officer recently retracted a statement he made Sept. 7 during the Buncombe County Board of Commissioners’ briefing on COVID-19, Asheville television station WLOS (News 13) reported Sept. 9.

During the briefing, Dr. William Hathaway said all patients at Asheville-based Mission Hospital who had died from COVID-19 during the recent delta variant surge were unvaccinated.

Since that statement, News 13 noted that it received several calls and messages to its newsroom, saying a loved one or a family member had died from COVID-19 at Mission hospital after being vaccinated.

On Sept. 9, Dr. Hathaway released an announcement saying he made the statement based on the knowledge had had at the time. He now confirms at least two people who have died of COVID-19 at Mission (through Sept. 9) were vaccinated.

Following is Dr. Hathaway’s retraction statement:

“During a regular COVID update to the Buncombe County Commission, I made a statement based on the knowledge I had at the time that no vaccinated people had died at Mission Hospital from COVID-19.

“I have since learned there were 2 deaths and apologize for that error. My intention was to reinforce that the vaccine is both safe and effective in protecting individuals from serious illness or hospitalization from COVID-19. 

“While the number may not be zero, it is emphatically true that the large majority of hospitalizations and the vast majority of deaths are occurring in unvaccinated people, and I strongly encourage anyone who was not been vaccinated to do so.”



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