Global recognition of all vaccines will accelerate tourism recovery
The World Travel and Tourism Council assured that global reciprocal recognition of all approved COVID-19 vaccines is necessary
Although there have been some advances in the matter, the body that represents the private sector of travel and tourism at a global level pointed out that with this reciprocal recognition the travel and tourism sector will recover faster.
The request for reciprocal recognition of vaccines is part of the WTTC guidelines, which aim to safely resume international mobility and save the millions of jobs and livelihoods that depend on travel and tourism, while initiating the global economic recovery.
Julia Simpson, President and CEO of the WTTC, stated that tourists who face barriers to entry to various destinations is something of concern, which generates mistrust among consumers, who unfortunately stop booking their business or pleasure trips.
This occurs despite the fact that most vaccines have obtained approval from the World Health Organization (WHO) or from Regulatory Authorities (SRAs), such as the Medicines and Health Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) and the Administration Food and Drug Administration of the United States, and the European Medicines Agency (EMA) of the United Kingdom.
"It is of great concern that not all countries are agreeing on a common list of all approved and recognized vaccines."
He assured that it is possible to avoid this by having a fully recognized list of all approved vaccines, which should be the key to unlocking international travel.
The WTTC noted that appropriately reduced protocols should be applied for vaccinated travelers, including no need for testing or quarantine for those who have received their full vaccination schedule.
Finally, the international body pointed out that it is convenient the global adoption of 'digital health certificates' that allow travelers to easily obtain and verify their vaccination status, the negative result of the COVID test or the natural immunity of a previous infection. These must work with existing border control systems and travel operators accepted by all countries. Digital verification of a traveler's COVID status before traveling will avoid long and unsafe waiting lines at transportation hubs and terminals.