Australian Doctor Suspended for Speaking Against COVID-19 Vaccines Takes Lawsuit to High Court
An Australian GP, who has sued medical regulators for suspending his registration after he said COVID-19 vaccines were dangerous, has applied for his lawsuit to be adjudicated by the country’s highest court.
In August 2022, the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) suspended the registration of North Brisbane GP registrar William Bay after he interrupted a national Australian Medical Association conference in late July and told the doctors present to stop forcing vaccines on people.
In enforcing its authority, the medical regulator said it believed Dr. Bay posed serious risks to persons and that immediate action needed to be taken to protect public health or safety.
APRHA has taken the stance (pdf) that vaccination is a crucial part of the public health response to the COVID-19 pandemic and that registered health practitioners have a vital role in COVID-19 vaccination programs and in educating the public about the importance and safety of COVID-19 vaccines to ensure high participation rates.
“Any promotion of anti-vaccination statements or health advice which contradicts the best available scientific evidence or seeks to actively undermine the national immunisation campaign (including via social media) is not supported by National Boards and may be in breach of the codes of conduct and subject to investigation and possible regulatory action,” APRHA and the National Boards said in 2021.
This stance has meant that many Australian doctors could not speak about their reservations around the COVID-19 mRNA vaccines, despite a wealth of evidence from international studies discussing adverse reactions to the vaccines causing issues like myocarditis, pericarditis and other post-COVID vaccine syndromes.
The suspension pushed Dr. Bay to file a lawsuit against the AHPRA and the Medical Board of Australia in November 2022 to regain his registration.
The GP cited many reasons for his claim, including the allegation that the medical regulators did not have a valid legal existence as a national authority because they were formed by Queensland statute.
In addition, he said the AHPRA suspended his registration under the Health Practitioner Regulation National Law, which he claimed was a law that didn’t exist as it was not passed by the federal parliament.
Bay also alleged that his suspension was a suppression of a doctor’s right to free speech and his or her ability to warn patients about the dangers of vaccines or any other medical treatment by AHPRA.
The Queensland Supreme Court was supposed to settle the lawsuit in a two day-hearing in late March 2023. However, on March 6, Bay made an application to have his lawsuit removed to the High Court.
The Reason Behind Dr Bay’s Decision
Dr. Bay told The Epoch Times that he made the decision after his opponents sought to have the lawsuit dismissed in the Supreme Court on the basis that his argument lacked any legal merit.
“One of the primary reasons was that they argued that my matter should have been heard in a tribunal, which is the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal, not in the Supreme Court, let alone the High Court,” Bay said.
In response to the AHPRA’s arguments, Dr. Bay said the matter of his lawsuit contained a significant level of public interest and importance that it needed to be heard in a court with national jurisdiction.
According to the court documents seen by The Epoch Times, Queensland Supreme Court Chief Justice Helen Bowskill issued a court order on March 22 in which she adjourned Dr Bay’s lawsuit indefinitely to have the matter removed to the High Court.
The matter is now before the High Court, and the court will determine whether to adjudicate the lawsuit.
AHPRA’s Suspension Brings Significant Hardship
Dr Bay told The Epoch Times that he was in financial difficulty because he was unable to work as a doctor during the suspension period.
The GP also said a compliance letter issued to him in August 2022 by AHPRA and the Medical Board of Australia had prohibited him from working in any field remotely connected to healthcare, including administration, teaching, advisory, research and so on.
Moreover, Dr Bay noted that even if he won the lawsuit, he was likely unable to resume his previous career.
“I have been expelled from the GP Registar specialty training program with the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners,” he said.
“So even if I am cleared of all temporary suspension charges and allowed to work again, I am unlikely to ever be allowed to resume my career again (as I would have to apply for a place back in the college again and start all over again), especially when new continuing professional development requirements are taken into account.
“Personally, the suspension has put a great strain on my relationships with my family and friends, and I have needed to sell my home and am currently renting.”
During his lawsuit application in November 2022, Dr Bay requested the Queensland Supreme Court to issue an interlocutory injunction to restrain the AHPRA and the Medical Board from enforcing their compliance letter against him, arguing that it was beyond the power of the medical regulators.
However, the court dismissed his request on March 22, the same day it agreed to remove his lawsuit to the High Court.
Censored for Speaking Against COVID-19 Vaccines
Dr Bay said he had been subject to censorship for expressing his views on the ineffectiveness and danger of the COVID-19 vaccines.
“I have had my QLD Peoples’ Protest Facebook page unpublished after protesting outside Pfizer Headquarters in Melbourne, and I have had my license as a doctor suspended under an abuse of AHPRA’s emergency powers,” he said.
Bay noted that his professional views on COVID-19 vaccines were clearly documented and supported by many references and scholarly work in his 45-page written submission to AHPRA.
“Yet, AHPRA did not contest any of my medical or scientific evidence,” he said.
“Instead, they declared me a serious risk to the safety of Australians by the mere action of me speaking out against their COVID policy views, which are now heavily discredited and have resulted in the injury and harm to tens of thousands of Australians.”
The suspended GP also said that as long as doctors were prohibited by AHPRA from telling the truth, or what they believed to be the truth about what was best for their patients, Australia would have a completely unethical and dysfunctional medical system.
“AHPRA’s sanctioning of doctors for merely doing their ethical and professional duty to warn patients of relevant risks regarding medical treatments is unprecedented in this country and will have devastating long-term effects on the trust Australians place in both doctors and their governments,” he said.
At the same time, Dr. Bay believed the reason AHPRA was pushing COVID-19 vaccines on Australians was due to a lack of medical expertise on the board.
“Not a single member of the eight-member board led by Gill Callister is a doctor,” he said.
“AHPRA arrogantly and wrongly believes it knows what’s medically best for each and every individual Australian without taking a single patient history, doing an allergy test, conducting an exam or even meeting the patient.
“The real question is why are taxpayers sending doctors to medical school to be overruled by these unqualified bureaucrats? AHPRA and the Board need to be held accountable for this extreme government overreach.”