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Analysing media coverage of Dr Jonie Girouard’s COVID vaccine exemptions

In brief

  • Media investigated Dr Jonie Girouard’s issuance of COVID vaccine exemptions. 
  • There are legitimate questions about the vaccine, and to some Girouard is a hero. 
  • Mainstream media supports COVID mandates and Western medicine, but there are many who prefer alternative medicine. 
  • Girouard has since left the country, but is this something to gloat about? 

Media coverage of Dr Jonie Girouard

Newshub and 1News have been reporting on Dr Jonie Girouard’s issuance of over 280 questionable COVID vaccine ‘exemptions’, bringing attention to the debate on medical autonomy and public health policy. However, the media’s critical coverage of her anti-vax actions overlooks the broader debate on vaccine mandates, individual rights, and diverse medical opinions.

Dr Jonie Girouard delivering a talk on Covid vaccine exemptions
Dr Jodie Girouard has left NZ. Is that really a win for the country? Image YouTube

Many in New Zealand prefer natural remedies and personal medical choices over Western allopathic medicine, just as many do in other parts of the world. Despite Western medicine’s effectiveness in emergency care, it often neglects optimising health through holistic approaches. This distinction is frequently overlooked in mainstream media coverage. 

Note the new government coalition is repealing the Therapeutic Products Act 2023. This act concerned many in the holistic Medicine field because of the potential restrictions it contained. 

Public opinion and medical autonomy

Prior to the widespread availability of the COVID vaccine in New Zealand, there were legitimate concerns about its safety and efficacy. Nonetheless, tight government control and massive communications programs didn’t allow for much discourse. Some individuals adopted a more cautious stance. 

Patients seeking exemptions were actively looking for medical guidance that aligned with their beliefs and concerns. 

To a segment of the population, Girouard may be seen as a hero rather than a villain. Mandates proved to be contentious. Yet, any hint of public backing of Girouard’s actions is absent from the narrative. This and the potential influence of political dynamics, such as the outcome of the last election and the ensuing promise to widen the COVID inquiry, are notable omissions in the articles.

Girouard was acting in an unprecedented time 

During COVID doctors in NZ were under pressure to support the vaccine. Yet the government encouraged the public to consult their doctors, if in doubt, about the vaccine. This implicitly suggests your doctor would be a neutral expert, which was deceitful, at best. This led to legal action by the group NZ Doctors Speaking Out on Science (NZDSOS). 

It remains to be seen what will happen in this suit. A comprehensive COVID inquiry may look into this as well. 

The impact of the Girouard clampdown

Girouard has since left the country. Many people appreciate New Zealand for its personal freedom and autonomy. The departure of a doctor like Girouard, who provided support to those seeking alternative medical opinions, might be seen as a loss by this group and for this kind of thinking. You can also be sure NZ’s reputation in the freedom community has suffered.

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