The EU proposes a boost for travel in the summer of 2022

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – European Union residents will have to receive reinforcements for the COVID-19 vaccine if they want to travel to another bloc country next summer, according to a proposal to be announced by the European Commission on Thursday.

The European Commission wants to harmonize rules in the 27 EU nations to allow free movement, a cornerstone of the European Union, but faces new restrictions as cases break records in Europe https: // www. reuters.com/world/europe/europe -think-hit-booster-shot-policy-covid-cases-hit-records-2021-11-24 and many EU countries present booster doses.

EU governments, which will have to approve the Commission’s recommendation, have started the debate on the subject https://www.reuters.com/world/europe/eu-kicks-off-debate-need-booster- shots-travel-2021- Tuesday 11-23. Greece has proposed that people in the future can travel freely if they have received a dose in the last six months.

Accepting that immunity decreases over time, the Executive Committee proposes that people be considered covered if their most recent dose was in the last nine months, an EU official told Reuters.

Given that the majority of EU residents who were vaccinated received the final doses during the second and third quarters of 2021, their coverage would expire mostly by the middle of next year.

The European Center for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) on Wednesday https://www.reuters.com/world/europe/eus-health-agency-says-vaccine-boosters-should-be-considered-all- adults-2021 -11-24 recommended vaccine boosters for all adults, with priority for those over 40, in a major change from their previous guide that suggested additional doses for the elderly and those with immune systems weaknesses.

EU coordination on COVID passes, which shows whether a holder is fully vaccinated or has a recent negative test or has recovered from the infection, has eased restrictions on cross-border travel.

Passes, which are typically viewed on mobile devices, are issued by individual countries, but are recognized throughout the block. They are now increasingly being deployed in many EU countries to access inland areas such as restaurants or theaters.

(Report by Sabine Siebold, written by Philip Blenkinsop, edited by Robin Emmott)

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