Dublin’s Beaumont Hospital is seeking High Court injunctions against activist Gemma O’Doherty over three "clearly defamatory" videos posted on the internet, including one describing the hospital as “a death camp”.
The hospital claims the videos, including one of Ms O’Doherty standing outside the hospital alleging staff are being "forced" to take the “experimental Covid 19 injection” which, she alleges, has killed “hundreds of thousands”, make a series of untrue claims and are “clearly defamatory”.
Its CEO Ian Carter said the videos are damaging to the hospital and upsetting to staff. It is also concerned their content could influence some patients, especially vulnerable patients, who might otherwise avail of healthcare at the hospital not to do so.
Michael Binchy BL, for the hospital, and for Marie Murray, its director of nursing, secured permission on Monday from Mr Justice Senan Allen to serve short notice of the plaintiffs application for injunctions on Ms O’Doherty, with an address in Foxrock, Dublin.
The plaintiffs are seeking interlocutory injunctions, under the Defamation Act 2009, in the context of defamation proceedings, to have the videos removed and to prevent any re-publication of them.
Three videos posted on June 8th, 10th and 11th contain “disparaging” references to named individuals who are members of the hospital’s staff, Mr Binchy said.
The videos also featured “wildly inaccurate” descriptions of the hospital which is very anxious that they are taken down, he said.
Mr Justice Allen granted liberty to effect short service of the application for injunctions on Ms O’Doherty and returned the matter to Friday.
He noted the injunctions are sought in defamation proceedings to which the plaintiffs contend Ms O’Doherty has no defence with any reasonable prospect of success.
While noting Mr Binchy wanted the matter returned to Wednesday, for reasons including the plaintiffs’ concern that further videos might be posted, the judge believed Ms O’Doherty would not have sufficient time to serve a replying affidavit if he returned the matter to Wednesday and he returned it to Friday instead.
In an affidavit, Mr Carter said he learned on June 9th of the fist video from a member of hospital staff after the video was shared on social media.
In all three videos, Ms O’Doherty has published “a large number of falsehoods” concerning the hospital and its staff, he said.
They included “wildly inaccurate” descriptions of the hospital as a “death camp” and describing some named staff as “psychopaths”.
Ms O’Doherty had further alleged that management, senior consultants, nurses, doctors and everyone involved in providing the vaccine have “blood on their hands”.
It was also falsely alleged staff are being forced to get the Covid-19 vaccine and, if they did not, they would be demoted to clerical duties, ostracised, harassed and stalked, he said. “For the avoidance of any doubt, this is untrue,” he said.
All vaccinations are undertaken on a voluntary and consented basis in line with HSE policy with the consent process including provision information from independent experts, he said.
Adverse drug reactions arising from administration of the vaccine are reported to the relevant authorities.
Some 32,015 vaccines have been administered by the hospital to patients and staff and no instances of blood clots have been identified to the hospital in relation to the administration of the vaccine to patients and staff, he said.
Contrary to claims in the videos that the hospital is “totally dysfunctional” and “unfit for purpose”, it is in fact a major academic teaching hospital with a strong commitment and track record in innovation in patient care and participates in national and international clinical research which informs best practice, he added.