On Monday, Drew Drew He tweeted his opposition to Covid-19 Passport vaccination, saying, “These passport vaccines separate people and strip them of their freedom to travel internationally. Vaccinations are important, and I encourage everyone to get the Covid vaccine, but how would you feel if international travel also required other vaccines? ”
Tuesday, He walked her back But to the thousands of people on Twitter, it seemed like a good question.
While vaccine passports have emerged as the latest flashpoint in COVID-19 pandemicMost people already have some type of document proving that they have been vaccinated against certain diseases. And many public health experts say such evidence will be key to bringing life back to normal while preventing future outbreaks of COVID-19.
“People have suffered for more than a year, and they want to get their lives back,” Lawrence Gustin, professor of global health law at Georgetown University, told BuzzFeed News. They want to go to restaurants, watch movies, travel to see loved ones, and get back to the workplace. Vaccine passports provide a faster and safer return to normal life.
With vaccines becoming widespread, the prospect of obtaining COVID-19 vaccine passports has become a reality for many people. European Union It will likely be launched in June. Israel, Which Leading the major countries In the vaccines that have been administered so far, one of them has already been introduced. China has one too. The UK is debating His own version. Introduced New York StateExcelsior CardShow evidence of vaccination or a negative test to reach sporting events, music venues, and businesses. At least Eight major airlines They are working on a copy of the Coronavirus passport, as is Walmart.
more than 64 million people, Or nearly 1 in 5 Americans have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 so far.
But the federal government – including Anthony FauciSo far, head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases – he explained He will not lead the efforts To show the national vaccination passport. Rather, it is Work on a corral More than a dozen copies are being developed in the private sector.
Many Republican leaders rejected such measures, indicating that they would constitute a government override. On Friday, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis Sign an executive order Banning the use of passports of vaccinations against Covid-19 disease in the state. On Sunday, Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves He told CNN He also opposed them. On Tuesday, Texas Governor Greg Abbott join in a.
“A passport is a good idea,” Howard Markel, a pediatrician and medical historian, told BuzzFeed News. “How it gets politicized is very upsetting and difficult for people working in public health to understand.”
This politicization has had a real effect. A recent poll found that Only 50% of the US population It would support a voluntary document verifying vaccination.
The debate going on in the United States is in many ways a replay of that which revolves around it Closures And the Contact tracing. Should people in the United States accept restrictions on their personal freedom in the name of public health? Are these Temporary measures last long after they are needed? Will people’s privacy be protected? But the idea of vaccine passports is not new: the United States already has a patchwork of private and public entities that require people to prove that they have been vaccinated.
“We already keep records of vaccinations in our medical records. Schools keep records of children. Many hospitals keep them for their employees. “This should be familiar,” Justin said.
To travel internationally, many people already have to prove that they have been vaccinated. To enter the United States, immigrants must present a record of vaccination against diseases – 14 in all Including hepatitis A and B, which are two types of influenza, polio, and chickenpox. Records are kept in a file Handbook issued by the World Health Organization. United States Armed Forces, Which sends its organs all over the world, requires about ten vaccinations depending on where the person is deployed.
Proof of vaccination is also required to enroll children in school In all fifty states. In Florida, where DeSantis is the ruler, children in kindergarten through 12th grade should be vaccinated against Six diseases. California And the Texas Each requires seven. Since vaccination requirements for schools are handled statewide – There is no federal mandate – Many states allow Personal belief or religious exemptions for parents to withdraw. California is among the states that revoked such exemptions after A. Measles outbreak That started in Disneyland in 2015 hit the state.
As long as there have been vaccines, public health officials have asked people to prove that they have received them. Historian Jordan E. Taylor also wrote in Time magazineStarting in the nineteenth century, American authorities required people to show that they had been vaccinated against smallpox. Immigration officials requested proof of vaccination on New York’s Ellis Island and Angel Island in San Francisco. The companies have mandated this as a condition of employment. During local outbreaks, police require people to prove that they have been vaccinated.
There are real concerns about vaccine passports. Some people are worried about Digital rights or Violation of privacy. But Justin who Co-author of a research paper in the Journal of the American Medical Association On potential ethical issues, he said vaccine passports contain very little information. “Vaccine passports protect your privacy in many ways. They don’t ask you to disclose any information, unless you receive a vaccine or not.
Others are raising doubts about the fairness of the request for proof of vaccination in the United States, from then until now Black and Latino Communities They were vaccinated at disproportionately low rates. Experts take this seriously but have suggested that these concerns will diminish as vaccines become more widely available.
Justin said, “Justice can’t be an afterthought.” We cannot obtain passports while vaccinations are scarce. In a month or two, the vaccines will catch up with people, not the other way around. Everyone will have a fair chance of getting it. “
Public health experts stressed that it is understandable that people feel uncertain about vaccine passports and encouraged them to speak with healthcare providers if they have questions.
“My recommendation is to consult your doctor or the websites of the World Health Organization or the CDC,” Markel said. “Have a good conversation with your doctor. We don’t want to bully people.”