During meetings between Indian and EU officials on the sidelines of the G20 conference in Italy on Tuesday, India will raise the subject of the European Medicines Agency’s (EMA) clearance of the Serum Institute of India’s Covishield vaccine.
Those who have been vaccinated with Covishield, an AstraZeneca vaccine produced in India by SII, are not eligible for the EU Digital Covid certificate or “green pass.” It’s an immunity certificate that makes it easier to travel between and beyond the EU’s 27 members. It will be operational by July 1st.
The only four Covid-19 vaccines authorised by the European Medicines Agency (EMA) are Pfizer/Comirnaty, BioNTech’s Moderna, AstraZeneca’s Vaxzervria, and Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen. Serum Institute of India in Pune manufactures Covishield, which is a variant of AstraZeneca’s Covid vaccine.
Adar Poonawalla, the chief executive officer of the Serum Institute of India, said on Monday that he had taken the subject up “at the highest level” to guarantee that Indians do not face any travel limitations.
“I understand that many Indians who have taken Covishield are having trouble travelling to the EU. I promise everyone that I have raised this with the highest levels of government and aim to fix this problem as quickly as possible, both with regulators and with nations diplomatically,” Poonawalla said.
The Serum Institute of India has applied to the European Medicines Agency (EMA) for approval of Covishield, a Covid-19 vaccine, for the European Union’s Green Pass programme.
What is a Digital Covid Certificate issued by the European Union?
An EU Digital Covid Certificate is electronic confirmation that a person has been vaccinated against Covid-19, tested negative for Covid-19, or recovered from Covid-19. The certificate is available in both digital and print formats, includes a QR code, is free of charge, is available in both the native language and English, is safe and secure, and is valid throughout the EU.
What is the procedure for obtaining the Covid-19 certificate?
The certificate is granted by national authorities; for example, it may be issued by test centres or health authorities, or it could be issued directly through an eHealth site.
The digital version may be downloaded and kept on a mobile device, and individuals can also request a print copy. Both versions will include a QR code that contains critical information as well as a digital signature that verifies the certificate’s authenticity.
Where does EU Digital Covid Certificate accepted?
The EU Digital Covid Certificate will be recognised in all EU member states and will help to guarantee that present limitations are eliminated in a coordinated way.
The bearer of an EU Digital Covid Certificate should be immune from any travel restrictions in principle, and member states should avoid from placing further travel restrictions on them.
They have the authority to prevent the holder from traveling if it is necessary and reasonable to protect public health. In such a scenario – for example, in response to novel variations of concern – the member state would be required to notify the Commission and all other member states, as well as defend its decision.