Opinions are divided among the Portuguese over the creation of a European passport for the COVID-19 vaccine, a document that would guarantee free movement between the countries of the Union European (EU).
European Commission Vice-President Margaritis Schinas said on March 1 that the Commission was on the verge of introducing a digital green passport that will allow Europe to be opened safely “while preserving the sacrifices made until now”.
Schinas said the measure will be announced on March 17 at an EU summit that will focus on travel and mobility as well as lifting restrictions.
He added that the digital green passport will include information on vaccination, test results, and cure statements, and fully respect data protection, security, and privacy. “The objective would be to define a common orientation towards the safe opening of Europe”, according to him.
Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Costa, after a European Council video conference on February 26, announced that a bloc-wide vaccination passport would be created “in the coming months”, which would allow people vaccinated to travel freely in the EU “without quarantine”.
“We are in favor of this measure for the whole of Europe, and to this end, we are working as the Presidency of the EU, in collaboration with the European Commission, so that this document can exist by the summer”, he said.
During a talk show on the Portuguese TV channel, SIC on Friday, political commentator Luis Pedro Nunes argued that the “European vaccine passport” would not work because there are different types of vaccines and not all of them offer not the same protection against COVID-19.
“In addition, it is not possible to prove that the vaccinated person does not transmit the virus, which would require a negative test before traveling. This concept of passport is therefore just an absurd idea,” he said. -He denounces.
Nunes, however, qualified his point, saying that the proposal for a “digital immunity certificate is not a bad idea in itself” because it would be a database “fed by accredited laboratories” with unified information from people who have been tested before boarding.
Clara Ferreira Alves, writer, and literary critic, has judged that the creation of a vaccine passport was an idea “extremely aggressive and impossible to put into practice”.
“Europe made a mistake with vaccines because there isn’t enough for everyone. There is something very strange, sick, and sinister about the EU’s relationship with industries pharmaceuticals since vaccines that are not Western are rejected, “she lamented.
SIC television commentator Daniel Oliveira, for his part, did not find ethical problems in the COVID-19 vaccine passport, because this instrument already exists for diseases such as yellow fever, provided that the vaccine is available to everyone.
According to him, the European Commission should use legal means to break the patents on vaccines and thus “guarantee health for all and not profit for some”.
As the world struggles to contain the pandemic, vaccination is underway in a growing number of countries, with several vaccines against the novel coronavirus already authorized.
In addition, 261 vaccine candidates are still being developed around the world – 79 of them are in clinical trials – in countries such as Germany, China, Russia, the United Kingdom – United, and the United States, according to information released by the World Health Organization on March 5.