Vaccine passports: A threat to our freedom or a grudgingly acceptable health precaution?

Credit: Getty Images
Credit: Getty Images

The U.S., U.K. and European Union are among those considering whether to introduce a digital passport that will allow citizens to show they have been vaccinated against Covid-19.

The certificate system could be used for traveling abroad, as well as to grant access to venues such as restaurants and bars.

It is thought a digital passport could help stimulate an economic recovery as countries prepare to relax public health measures over the coming weeks. The ailing airline industry… is among those calling for governments to usher in legislation that supports Covid vaccine passports.

Physicians and rights groups, however, are deeply concerned.

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[Clinical epidemiologist Deepti] Gurdasani said it is clear the protection coronavirus vaccines offer is “very far” from complete and “we know very little about the effectiveness of vaccines in preventing infection or even asymptomatic disease against several variants circulating in different countries.”

In addition, most countries do not have sufficient access to vaccines in order to immunize their populations, and Gurdasani warned a certificate system akin to vaccine passports would discriminate against those populations “even further.”

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“These so-called passports claim they would ensure those who can prove they have coronavirus immunity can start to return to normal life. Which raises the question — what happens to everyone else?”

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