Doctors in Nicaragua facing imprisonment for complaining about their government’s handling of the Covid-19 pandemic have received strong support from the World Medical Association.
At their annual General Assembly, held online, WMA delegates from across the world condemned the Nicaraguan Government for its legislation threatening doctors with up to 10 years in prison for drawing attention to a collapse of the country’s healthcare system.
The meeting heard that doctors in the public sector who demanded protective measures like masks, gloves or vaccines, were dismissed under the accusation that they disrupted the public peace. And private-sector physicians who advised patients on self-protection measures were told to stop those statements, under penalty of withdrawing their licence to practice medicine or the imposition of criminal penalties, among other terrorism-related charges.
WMA President Dr. Heidi Stensmyren said: ’We are urging the government of Nicaragua to protect all health professionals and to withdraw any legislation that may harm the professional autonomy of physicians. We pay tribute to the extraordinary role of Nicaraguan doctors, which is inherent to our ancient profession.’