Five million double-bitten Britons who received the Covid-19 AstraZeneca / Oxford vaccine have been given a travel warning as the government prepares to provide an update on changes to the UK travel list.
More than 13 European destinations refuse to accept certain batches of vaccines manufactured in India by Serum.
Up to 17 destinations are expected to be added to the green list today and up to five million Britons will not have their vaccination status recognized across Europe.
This means that some Birts may have to self-isolate for up to fifteen days despite a new vaccination “passport” offered to people arriving in the UK from the US and the EU.
Portugal, a popular destination for Britons, has now removed quarantine rules for fully bitten Britons.
Which lots are affected?
The EU still does not recognize a version of the AstraZeneca vaccine called Covishield, which is produced by the Serum Institute of India.
The doses have been given to up to five million people in the UK, but have yet to be approved by the European Medicines Agency (EMA), which regulates vaccinations in the block.
British tourists who received the Indian-made doses would be reported at the EU border and could be refused entry.
The EU’s Covid digital certificate is now operational to allow travel without quarantine, but it would not recognize AstraZeneca vaccines made in India with lot numbers 4120Z001, 4120Z002 and 4120Z003.
These also appear on recipient cards after being vaccinated and on the Covid travel pass on the NHS app, which is currently used as a digital vaccination certificate for overseas travel.
The Pfizer, Moderna, Johnson & Johnson and AstraZeneca vaccines made in the UK or Europe, sold under the Vaxzevria brand, are currently the only Covid-19 vaccines approved by the EMA.
A spokesperson for the European Commission told the Daily Telegraph: “Entry into the EU should be allowed to people fully vaccinated with one of the vaccines allowed in the EU.
“Member States are not required to issue certificates for a vaccine which is not authorized in their territory.”
UK authorities have used the brand name Vaxzevria on all UK medical records where the AstraZeneca vaccine has been used, even though it is the Indian-made Covishield version.
Thus, vaccine versions are only identifiable by lot numbers.
The Department of Health has reportedly not confirmed the number of Indian-made AstraZeneca jabs that have been administered in the UK, citing trade sensitivities, but up to five million doses are believed to have been imported from India more early this year.
Vaccines made in India are currently not authorized by the EMA as no license has yet been requested for them.
India’s foreign minister and the director general of the Serum Institute of India have reportedly raised the issue with the EU.
British travelers also face a similar problem when traveling to the United States, where no AstraZeneca vaccine has yet been authorized.
The EU vaccine passport should integrate with the Covid travel pass on the NHS app.
Travelers will need to scan a QR code which will then provide information to the EU system, including a person’s name, date of birth and vaccination status, including the lot numbers they have received.
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This notice was published: 2021-08-06 06:00:00