May 12, 2020
As the world begins to open once again after the COVID-19 pandemic, we have to consider how to do so safely in order to minimize further spread of the virus. One possible idea—being considered by countries including Chile, Germany, Italy, the UK, and the United States—is to have an immunity passport: a physical or digital document confirming that a person has become immune to SARS-CoV-2. While immunity certifications are typically discussed in the context of allowing a person to return to work or school, they are also being considered in the context of travel as a way to help stop the spread of the novel coronavirus from regions with high infection rates to those that have not been as severely impacted by the global pandemic. And while this does make sense in theory, the idea of immunity passports raises several ethical questions, including who will have access to the passports and antibody testing, what privileges the passport would provide, and what happens when you effectively create two different classes of people based on immunity to a virus. Here’s what travelers should know and consider.
In addition, Dr. Daniel Goldberg, an attorney and associate professor at the Center for Bioethics and Humanities at the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus, says that travelers should be aware that restrictions involving immunity passports may limit or otherwise affect their access to social services, major tourist sites, and public transit.
“Where they exist, such requirements may restrict access to places and situations deemed at especially high risk of transmitting COVID19,” he tells Fodor’s Travel. “Such contexts might include large group gatherings especially in tight/enclosed indoor spaces, or access to places with a concentration of people at elevated risk—like nursing homes and long-term care facilities, prisons, etc.”
Read the full article at Fodor's Travel.
Department of Epidemiology
ColoradoSPH Community News
ColoradoSPH COVID-19 News