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French health body outs unvaccinated doctors in letters to patients

Some patients have reported receiving letters from l’Assurance maladie informing them that their doctor is not vaccinated. Here’s what to do if you are affected

Patients have shared images of the letters online, questioning whether they are a hoax Pic: Pixavril / Shutterstock

French health body l’Assurance maladie has been sending letters to some patients in France informing them that their doctor is not vaccinated against Covid, and therefore no longer able to treat them.

Since October 15, medical professionals in France have been required by law to get vaccinated against Covid-19 in order to continue in their roles.

Yet some recipients have been shocked and even questioned if the letters are a hoax as they reveal the private medical information of their practitioners.

One user posted a photo of a letter sent to them on November 9. Mistakenly attributing the letter to l’Agence Regionale de Sante (ARS) instead of l’Assurance maladie, they wrote: “The ARS is sending this to patients.

“They are destroying the work of [unvaccinated] doctors by directing patients to other professionals and saying consultations and treatment [from unvaccinated doctors] will not be reimbursed. Goodbye to medical privacy for doctors!”

The letter reads: “During the period of 01/11/2021 – 07/11/2021 you were asked to make an appointment with this medical professional… your practitioner has been informed that from [15/11/2021] they will no longer be able to continue their medical practice.”

“Consultations, treatments and medication prescribed by [this doctor] will no longer be reimbursed by l’Assurance maladie. You are invited to contact another practitioner in order to continue your care.”

L’Assurance maladie told 20 Minutes: “Since October 15, 2021, independent health care professionals, like all medical practitioners, must be vaccinated against Covid-19 if they want to continue their practice, according to law.”

It said unvaccinated professionals have received a “notification from the ARS banning them from practicing”. In cases where they have continued, l’Assurance maladie confirmed it has alerted patients by letter.

However, it said this has only happened in a small number of cases, as “96.7% of independent health care professionals currently practicing are vaccinated”.

How to find a new doctor in France

If you receive a letter like this from l’Assurance maladie and need to find a new medical practitioner, there are a few ways to do so.

You can find details of GPs on the Ameli website, and doctors of all kinds can also be located via the widely-used internet platform Doctolib.

You can also use the Doctolib platform to help you find an English speaking GP near where you live in France.

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