Wow, imagine being this poor guy. D.J. Ferguson, a 31-year-old man, is fighting for his life in a Boston hospital. Brigham and Women's Hospital has denied his heart transplant. D.J.'s family claims it was because he refused to get vaccinated against COVID-19.

David, D.J.'s father, said his son simply doesn't believe in the COVID vaccine. The Associated Press reports that according to the family, D.J. was at the front of the line on the list for heart recipients but because he has not received the COVID-19 vaccine he is no longer eligible. That's according to hospital policy.

WUPE logo
Get our free mobile app

Tracey, D.J.'s mother, made it quite clear that D.J. is not against vaccinations, saying he's had other vaccinations in the past. However, D.J. has been diagnosed with an irregular and sometimes rapid heart rhythm known as atrial fibrillation and he's concerned about possible side effects of the COVID vaccine.

According to health officials, one of the rare side effects associated with COVID shots is heart inflammation. In a statement posted on their GoFundMe page, the family wrote:

In DJs case he can NOT afford for his heart to swell any more than it already is right now. He is at extremely high risk of sudden death if it does.

Brigham and Women's Hospital is defending themselves and sticking to their decision. In a statement posted on their website, Brigham and Women's says their policy requiring recipients to have the COVID-19 shot is in line with many other transplant programs across the United States.

And Brigham and Women's Hospital is not alone. Hospitals in other states have faced similar criticism for denying transplants to unvaccinated patients. The Ferguson family says they're unsure of their future plans. They would like to transfer D.J. but he may be too weak to move to another facility.

For their part, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also says they recommend that immunocompromised people, which includes organ transplant patients, be vaccinated because they are even more vulnerable to COVID.

For more on the story, check it out on the AP's website here.

Answers to 25 common COVID-19 vaccine questions

Vaccinations for COVID-19 began being administered in the U.S. on Dec. 14, 2020. The quick rollout came a little more than a year after the virus was first identified in November 2019. The impressive speed with which vaccines were developed has also left a lot of people with a lot of questions. The questions range from the practical—how will I get vaccinated?—to the scientific—how do these vaccines even work?

Keep reading to discover answers to 25 common COVID-19 vaccine questions.

Here are some tips for self-care during the pandemic:

How Many in America: From Guns to Ghost Towns

Can you take a guess as to how many public schools are in the U.S.? Do you have any clue as to how many billionaires might be residing there? Read on to find out—and learn a thing or two about each of these selection’s cultural significance and legacy along the way.

LOOK: See the iconic cars that debuted the year you were born

More From WUPE