European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen told The New York Times the EU would specifically accept fully vaccinated Americans who have received one of the vaccines approved by the European Medicines Agency.
- All three of the common vaccines in the U.S. — Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson — have been approved by the European Medicines Agency, according to Fox News.
She also told The New York Times that the decision will allow “free movement” throughout Europe this summer. Many countries — like Greece, Italy and others — will allow U.S. travelers if this decision goes through.
- “The Americans, as far as I can see, use European Medicines Agency-approved vaccines,” von der Leyen said. “This will enable free movement and travel to the European Union.”
- “Because one thing is clear: All 27 member states will accept, unconditionally, all those who are vaccinated with vaccines that are approved by EMA,” she added.
The European Union has already begun creating “digital green certificates,” which reveal whether or not someone has been vaccinated against COVID-19 or has recovered from COVID-19 in the last few months, according to The New York Times.
Does this mean vaccine passports?
There have been questions about potential vaccine passports in the United States, which would be “credentials that would allow Americans to prove they’ve been vaccinated against the novel coronavirus,” as I wrote for the Deseret News. It’s unclear if the EU’s forthcoming decision would require vaccine passports in order for people to travel there.
White House coronavirus coordinator Jeff Zients told reporters that any sort of vaccine passport aims to keep people safe against the spread of COVID-19.
- “Our role is to help ensure that any solutions in this area should be simple, free, open source, accessible to people both digitally and on paper and designed from the start to protect people’s privacy,” Zients said.