G7 countries prioritise global Covid passport for inoculated

Julia Hartley-Brewer grills Robert Jenrick on G7 Covid rules

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Agreement was reached on so-called vaccine passports following a meeting in Oxford of health ministers from G7 countries. Following the two-day summit, the politicians concluded that international standards and recommended practices must be set “for the creation, use and mutual recognition of testing and vaccination certificates… that rely on safe, effective and rigorously reviewed vaccines”.

It comes after the NHS app was updated to allow members of the public to view their vaccination status, but also amid reports that vaccine passport plans for mass gatherings in the UK are being scrapped.

Responding to this, Health Secretary Matt Hancock said that “when it comes to using certification for domestic purposes, that is the review that Michael Gove is leading, and we’ll come forward with the conclusions of it soon”.

Health ministers from Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the UK and the USA also agreed on a new charter which it is hoped will bring about standardised evidence and data from international trials, in a bid to speed up access to approved treatments and vaccines, as well as agreed minimum standards of health data to be shared internationally.

After the meeting, Mr Hancock said the agreements will lead to “a series of measures to make us all safer by improving clinical trials, quicker and wider access to safe vaccines, better use of data, more accurate health surveillance tools and greater collaboration between countries”.

The ministers are also considering how best to incentivise the development and supply of new and existing antimicrobial treatments, including new antibiotics, in their countries.

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