With tens of millions of COVID-19 vaccine doses going into American arms, pressure is mounting for a U.S. “vaccine passport” that would allow the fully immunized to travel freely and more easily enjoy other aspects of pre-pandemic life.
More than two dozen airline trade organizations, labor unions and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce have asked the White House to “establish uniform guidance” for a method of proof of COVID-19 immunity, according to a letter sent last week to White House Coronavirus Response Coordinator Jeff Zients.
Some other nations are even further along. For instance, Israel is now issuing a Green Pass to the immunized that allows them exclusive access to sports events, concerts, gyms, hotels and restaurants.
The pros of a vaccine passport program are obvious — a boost to tourism and reinvigoration of economies hit hard by the pandemic.
“Inevitably I think there are going to be these passports because people are eager to go back to a sense of normalcy,” said Dr. Mahshid Abir, a senior physician policy researcher for the RAND Corp. “From both the supply and demand side, there is impetus to get tourism and traveling back on track, and go back to some semblance of normalcy.”
Author(s): Dennis Thompson, HealthDay Reporter