A North Carolina man who said a hospital refused to carry out a kidney transplant because he’s unvaccinated against COVID-19 is willing to “die free” rather than comply with the vaccine requirement.
“I was born free. I will die free. I’m not changing my mind,” Chad Carswell told WSOC. “I’ve had conversations with my family and everybody that’s close to me. They know where I stand, and it’ll not be a situation that occurs that I will choose to change my mind on this topic.”
Carswell is a double amputee who has had previous heart surgeries. Now, he is in need of a kidney transplant due to it operating at 4% and requiring him to get dialysis three times a week.
His friends and local businesses in the Burke County area have raised funds for the surgery, and more than 100 people have offered one of their own kidneys to the man.
But Atrium Health Wake Forest Baptist Hospital in Winston-Salem informed Carswell he and whoever donates a kidney must be fully vaccinated to proceed with the transplant.
“He said, ‘The last thing we need to talk about is your vaccination status,'” Carswell recalled, referring to a hospital conversation. “And that’s when I politely told him there was nothing really to talk about it, it wasn’t up for debate [and] that I wasn’t getting it. Then, he told me, ‘You know you’ll die if you don’t get it.’ And I said, ‘I’m willing to die.’”