Residents of Israel and Bahrain who are eligible for COVID-19 vaccine booster shots and do not have them risk losing their vaccination聽status granting them access to everything from restaurants to shopping malls.
Israel was the first country to make a booster shot a requirement for “Green Pass”聽digital vaccination passports, which聽allow individuals to enter everything from hotels, cinemas, gyms, and restaurants, to places of worship.
Under new guidelines issued on Oct. 3, the聽validity of the previous Green Pass was shortened and any聽pass issued prior to this date was made void.
According to a government advisory, the Green Pass聽will now only be available to people who聽can prove they have had a booster shot of a government-approved COVID-19 vaccine after their previous two doses expired after six months, or have聽recovered from the disease.
People who have recovered from COVID-19 once or twice and have not been vaccinated are eligible for a pass valid for up to six months from the date of the last certificate of recovery under a different set of guidelines. Those who’ve recovered but have received聽only one vaccine dose before or after recovery聽are eligible for a Green Pass valid through the end of March next year.
Those who have received only one dose are not eligible for a Green Pass, even if they test positive on a serologic test after vaccination. It has not been confirmed whether further booster shots would be needed in the future for an individual to be considered fully vaccinated.
Meanwhile,聽those who have been vaccinated or who have recovered outside of Israel may or聽may not be聽eligible for a Green Pass depending on the聽number of doses of the vaccine that they have received and on the results of serologic and PCR tests in Israel.
People who decide not to get a booster shot are still able to enter venues with a negative PCR or antigenic test taken 24 hours prior, according to a statement聽by Israel鈥檚 Ministry of Health Deputy Director-General Dr. Asher Salmon.
Israel鈥檚 new system replaces its previous one that required just two shots to become eligible for a Green Pass.
“We believe everyone should be getting a third shot. We are basically telling people that if they have not already done so, they are not fully vaccinated,”聽Salmon said.
new policy prompted聽scores of protesters to take to Israeli streets in demonstrations around the country as more than聽2 million people risk losing their vaccination passports.
But Israel is not the only country to take a hardline approach to vaccination passports, as聽Bahrain has also changed the聽vaccination status of those eligible for a booster shot on Oct. 4.
As of that date, individuals who are eligible for a聽booster shot will see their vaccination status lowered from the “Green Shield” to the “Yellow Shield” on聽the kingdom鈥檚 digital vaccine passport, the BeAware mobile application, if they do not receive聽a booster shot.
Previously, individuals were considered fully vaccinated two weeks after their second dose and were given “Green Shield” status, meaning they were able to enter shopping malls, restaurants, cinemas, and other indoor services.
topic of booster shots has left health professionals and experts divided.
On Tuesday, scientists at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said they were not taking a stance on a proposal to authorize booster shots of Moderna鈥檚 vaccine after the company noted聽waning effectiveness against聽COVID-19 infection.
FDA staff said the vaccine and the two others cleared for use in the United States are still holding up well against severe disease.
Meanwhile,聽U.S. drug regulators on Wednesday said a second shot of Johnson & Johnson鈥檚 COVID-19 vaccine could bolster people鈥檚 protection against the disease, but they did not have enough time to independently analyze the data the company submitted.
Both Johnson & Johnson and Moderna are asking regulators to allow boosters for their vaccines following the FDA’s clearance of a Pfizer booster for tens of millions of Americans.
Pezou : People in Israel and Bahrain Risk Losing Vaccination Status If y Do Not Get Booster Shot