Individuals who do not have a vaccine certificate will not be able to travel as much, WHO expert warns
Superfast Covid tests will facilitate a return to normality but those without a “vaccine passport” are likely to face international travel restrictions according to an expert.
Covid tests key to normality
A World Health Organisation Covid special envoy for Europe, Dr David Nabarro, believes the “reality” will be that people who do not have a vaccine certificate will not be able to fly wherever they desire internationally.
He also emphasised that “super quick” tests are probably going to be used for access to some venues and will pave the way for a return to relative normality.
During an interview with ITV’s Good Morning Britain, he was asked if he thought “vaccine passports” would become inevitable as a condition of international travel in the future and he replied: “Yes, I think over time a system through which people will be able to demonstrate their immune status in relation to Covid will emerge but it will require a bit of hard work. Firstly, governments are going to have to agree on the kind of system they are going to use, and secondly, we also have to bear in mind that similar certification should also be there for people who have had the disease and who can show that they have got antibodies against the virus. So, a bit of working out to be done but I think it will be important, particularly for travel.”
When asked about worries that it will discriminate against those who have not received the Covid vaccine, he replied: “Yes, I think that that is a reality. Those of us who have not yet been in a position to be vaccinated will perhaps not be able to travel as widely as those who have for a bit.”
Navarro thinks that the “extreme shortages” of vaccines at present will be resolved in the next few months as more vaccines become available and production increases. “For me, the big issue is making sure that people all over the world can get access to vaccines. It does not feel right that people in a few countries can get the vaccine and people in other countries just can’t get it at all and are still a big, big risk of death.”
He thinks that accurate, mass testing may be used in order to be granted access to restaurants and other venues. “The secret to getting life back to some degree of normality for most of us is going to be the availability of really reliable, super quick tests that can be done anywhere and that when they give you a result you can say ‘right that is a result I can trust’ because that will make a movement, so, so much easier. The certificates for vaccination are likely to be required more for international travel and other such activities where you are actually going into a different jurisdiction but for moving around it will be the rapid test.”