EU allows individual states to accept Covishield for travel certificatetext_fields
An EU official on Tuesday informed that individual member states of the European Union would have the option to accept World Health Organisation (WHO)-approved vaccines like Covidshield to obtain the bloc's digital COVID certificate or Green Pass. The EU Digital Covid certificate or Green Pass is a document that proves that an individual is vaccinated against COVID-19 which would be a mandatory document to travel to European countries. However, as the Covishield is not approved by the EMA as of now, there have been concerns if those who received Covishield would be able to travel to EU member states under its Green Pass scheme.
"The aim of the EU Digital COVID Certificate is to facilitate free movement inside the EU. It is not a pre-condition to travel," said the official. "For the purpose of the Digital COVID Certificate, individual member states will have the option to accept also vaccinations that have been authorised by the World Health Organization, such as Covishield," the official added.
The European Medical Agency has not received any authorisation request as of Monday for Covishield. "Concerning a possible EMA authorisation for Covishield, as of yesterday, the European Medicine Agency (EMA) stated that it had not received a request for approval," the official said. "It will examine any such request when received, as per its procedures."
"The EMA does not investigate new drugs on its own unless it is asked by the relevant companies," the official said. The EMA has currently approved four COVID-19 vaccines including the AstraZeneca vaccine produced in the UK and other EU countries called Vaxzevria.
Regarding the temporary restrictions on travel from non-EU countries including India, the official said, "EU member states shall gradually lift these temporary travel restrictions at the external borders, based on developments of the health situation."