Americans will need a vaccine passport if they wish to travel to Europe this summer.
European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen told the New York Times that American tourists will have to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 in order to visit the region for nonessential travel.
“All 27 member states will accept, unconditionally, all those who are vaccinated with vaccines that are approved by E.M.A. (European Medicines Agency),” von der Leyen told the Times.
U.S. and European officials have reportedly been in discussions on how to implement a vaccine certificate for international travel.
The Daily Caller reports:
All three vaccines currently being used in the United States, from Moderna, Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson, have been approved by the EMA. European regulators have also authorized use of AstraZeneca’s vaccine, which is awaiting approval by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. (RELATED: CDC Lifts Pause On Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 Vaccine With Warning Label Added)
Details on how exactly travelers will prove their vaccination status are still being worked out. A low-tech option may suffice in the short term until an official and internationally-recognized vaccine certificate is developed, according to The Times.
While the Biden Administration said the U.S. will not implement federal government-issued vaccine passports, New York launched the “Excelsior Pass” app to track people’s health status.
The app, according to New York state “provides secure, digital proof of COVID-19 vaccination or negative test results.”
Recently, a New York state official announced that all fans and staff at the Buffalo Bills’ NFL stadium must be vaccinated against COVID-19 in order to enter the facility. The same policy also extends to Buffalo Sabres fans.
NY State Official Announces Vaccine Passports Required to Attend Buffalo Bills Games
Erie County, NY Executive Mark Poloncarz announced yesterday that all fans and staff at the Buffalo Bills’ NFL stadium must be vaccinated against COVID-19 in order to enter the facility. The same policy also extends to Buffalo Sabres fans.
On Twitter, Poloncarz wrote, “Erie County is in support of returning fans to the stadium and arena, this upcoming fall. The best way to do this is to ensure all fans are vaccinated!”
The tweet included a graphic which stated the county “supports returning all fans to stadium and arena for fall.” It says the way to achieve this is to “require all fans and staff to be fully vaccinated.”
“No vaccine=no entry,” the graphic stated.
3,298 new cases in the last 7 days.
Giving Erie county a rate of 359 total new cases per 100,000 residents in the past 7 days. Making a Erie County a "High-risk" for transmission zone. pic.twitter.com/rxktvw03sZ
— Mark Poloncarz (@markpoloncarz) April 13, 2021
Poloncarz encouraged fans to apply to receive their passports. “
“You can apply now to receive your ‘Excelsior Pass,’ he wrote on Twitter. “There is a app you can download right on your cell phone. This app will show your shot records, and that you have been full vaccinated.”
In a media briefing, Poloncarz said religious and medical exemptions for the vaccine will not be accommodated.
“Some people are like, ‘Well that’s unfair,’ but there’s no God-given right to attend a football game,” he said.
The news of the mandatory vaccination requirement came on the same day the CDC and FDA recommended a “pause” on the Johnson and Johnson COVID-19 vaccine following blood clot complications.
Report: Biden Admin Working On Scannable Vaccine Passports
Coronavirus vaccine passports are reportedly being developed by the Biden Administration that would allow Americans to prove they have been vaccinated.
It is too soon to know how it would play out legally but some businesses have indicated that they will require proof of vaccination for people to enter their businesses.
“The administration’s initiative has been driven largely by arms of the Department of Health and Human Services, including an office devoted to health information technology, said five officials who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss the effort,” The Washington Post reported. “The White House this month took on a bigger role coordinating government agencies involved in the work, led by coronavirus coordinator Jeff Zients, with a goal of announcing updates in coming days.”
The report said that a digital version of the vaccine passport would be available through smartphone apps and “could display a scannable code similar to an airline boarding pass.”
Developers told the Post that people should also have the option of printing out a vaccine passport. The vaccine passports are expected to face “significant hurdles” surrounding data privacy and making sure that the passports cannot be counterfeited.
“One of the most significant hurdles facing federal officials: the sheer number of passport initiatives underway, with the Biden administration this month identifying at least 17,” the Post added. “Those initiatives — such as a World Health Organization-led global effort and a digital pass devised by IBM that is being tested in New York state — are rapidly moving forward, even as the White House deliberates about how best to track the shots and avoid the perception of a government mandate to be vaccinated.”
The leader of the Communist Party of China, Chinese President Xi Jinping has been pushing for months for a global tracking system using QR codes to monitor people who have been exposed to the coronavirus.
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