France allows travelers vaccinated with Covishield after the “Green Pass” line

France allows travelers vaccinated with Covishield after the “Green Pass” line

France has joined with several other European countries in allowing international travelers who have received Covishield, a version of the AstraZeneca vaccine manufactured by the Serum Institute of India (SII) based in Pune. Many EU member states have started accepting visitors vaccinated with Covishield after global outcry over the European Medicines Agency (EMA) not recognizing the vaccine made in India for the ‘Green Pass’ “.

“Because the vaccines are effective against the virus, and in particular its Delta variant, the constraints weighing on travelers benefiting from a complete vaccination schedule with a vaccine recognized by the European Medicines Agency (Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca or Janssen ) will be lifted from this Saturday, July 17, regardless of the country of origin, ”French Prime Minister Jean Castex said in a statement.

The technical specifications of the “Green Pass” suggest that the obligation of EU Member States would be limited to “vaccines that have received EU-wide marketing authorization”. The EMA has approved Comirnaty (Pfizer / BioNTech), Moderna, Vaxzervria (AstraZeneca), Janssen (Johnson & Johnson). But Member States have the option of allowing travelers with vaccination certificates other than those approved by the EMA.

After controversy over the EU’s Covid digital certificate erupted in late June, SII chief Adar Poonawalla said the company expects to receive EMA approval within a month. Speaking to Twitter, Poonawalla said he has taken up the issue at “the highest level” and “hopes to resolve this issue soon, both with regulators and at the diplomatic level with countries.”

Poonawalla said at the time that the EMA was “absolutely right” to ask the SII to seek approval, adding that the company had already requested it through AstraZeneca. “We’re pretty confident that in a month’s time the EMA will approve Covishield. There is no reason not to do this as it is based on AstraZeneca data and our product is more or less identical to AstraZeneca and it has been approved by WHO, UK MHRA. Poonawalla added.

The EMA said on Thursday, however, that it had yet to receive an official marketing authorization application from the developer. He stressed that the manufacturer must submit the application for Covidshield to be evaluated for use in the European Union. The EU health regulator also said it assesses vaccines and medicines for use in the EU and has no responsibility for vaccinations accepted for travel.


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