The concept of immune passports introduced in Chile will trigger a wave of discrimination. This is written by CGTN.
Following Chile, a number of leading European countries intend to introduce the so-called “Health Passport COVID-19.” This is necessary to end the forced blockade and start letting tourists and businessmen go. However, a number of experts doubt the effectiveness of this document and believe that this will lead to discrimination in society. After all, a passport will be issued only to those who have recovered from COVID-19.
According to representatives of the Ministry of Health of Chile, an immune passport is already necessary for residents of the country to travel within the state, as well as for those who come to Chile from other countries by land, air and sea routes.
The interactive application associated with the COVID-19 test database gives the user three access levels: red, yellow, and green. A person with a red code cannot travel. While those with a yellow code can travel, but with mandatory quarantine, green codes allow you to travel without any restrictions.
“In order to receive a COVID-19 medical passport, people must provide or fill out a special application,” the country’s Ministry of Health said on its website. Travelers will also have to undergo temperature screening and answer questions from health authorities.
Germany, Italy, the UK, and the US are considering using a similar concept to restart their economies. In Germany, the issuance of immune certificates is planned to be launched immediately after receipt of antibody testing kits from the Swiss medical company Roche.
European countries are also expanding their testing for antibodies to coronavirus to track the spread of the virus and use the results as one of the key factors for issuing a certificate. Politicians in favor of coronavirus passports believe that the person who discovered the antibodies acquired sufficient immunity against the new virus. Such protection allows people to attend offices, meetings, and trips as the government weakens physical distance standards.
But the World Health Organization (WHO) has released a scientific summary explaining that government actions are not well-founded. “There is insufficient evidence of the effectiveness of immunity associated with the presence of antibodies to guarantee the accuracy of the immune passport,” the WHO statement said.
The issue of accuracy and reliability is another critical issue, the UN Health Organization found out. Quick tests have been found to falsely label people with a positive or negative result.
Several researchers also warn that such passports can lead to discrimination and corruption.
“Existing socio-economic, racial, and ethnic inequalities can be reflected in the administration of such certification, which determines who can get access to antibody testing and who faces the certification queue,” said Alexandra L. Felan, Georgetown University Medical Center in Comments for The Lancet.