Wednesday, March 3, 2021

United Kingdom willing to provide travel vaccination “certificates”

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The British government is willing to provide vaccination “certificates” for international travel if required by other countries, but has ruled out internal use, said Nadhim Zahawi, secretary of state responsible for the covid-19 immunization program.

“Some countries have started to demand a certificate [de vacinação], as we do now with the tests (of covid-19) before traveling ”, he explained, speaking to the British ITV station.

According to Zahawi, some countries only allow people to enter if they have some kind of certificate that proves that they have been vaccinated against the coronavirus. “We will try to make it easier for the individual” to ask, he said.

Israel has announced in recent days that it has reached principle agreements with Greece and Cyprus to allow unrestricted movement of vaccinated citizens against the new coronavirus between the respective countries, while in Europe, Sweden and Denmark have already announced the creation of digital vaccination certificates for trips abroad, similar to Iceland.

Zahawi stressed, however, that the so-called “Vaccination passports” they will not be used in the UK domestically to relieve existing restrictions.

“We are not evaluating vaccination passports for our national economy. I think it is much better to vaccinate the entire adult population, to offer the vaccine as soon as possible, until September ”, he added.

The British immunization plan, which started on December 8, 2020, completed the first stage of administering a first dose to 15 million people from the first four priority groups and entered a new stage on Monday, starting the vaccination of people over 65 years old.

Health officials are confident that everyone over 50 will receive their first dose by the end of April and all adults by September.

The newspaper The Times reported this Tuesday that the effects of the vaccination program have already begun to be felt in terms of reducing hospitalizations, deaths and transmission of the coronavirus. When comparing the cases of elderly people who received the vaccine with those who did not, preliminary data suggest that the immunization plan is reducing covid-19 hospitalizations and deaths.

Another study of vaccinated health professionals also showed low levels of infection, which shows that vaccines reduce transmission. The Times newspaper reports that these are preliminary data based mainly on the vaccine by the pharmaceutical company Pfizer. The other vaccine used in the UK is AstraZeneca.

British Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, admitted on Monday there are “interesting” signs that vaccines are working, but said he would act “with caution” to ease current restrictions to contain the covid-19 pandemic in the country.

The number of daily infections has fallen 29% in the past seven days in the UK, which on Monday reported 9,765 new positive cases, against 10,972 on Sunday. The number of deaths also decreased by 26.2% in the last seven days, with 230 registered on Monday, against 258 on Sunday.

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United Kingdom willing to provide travel vaccination "certificates"