July 12, 2024
English TKP News

WHO calls on states to lift or ease international traffic bans

According to the WHO, travel restrictions introduced to limit the international spread of the Omicron variant have been a failure

The WHO has published the minutes of the tenth meeting of the Emergency Committee convened by the WHO Director-General under the International Health Regulations (2005) (IHR) in relation to the coronavirus disease pandemic.

Among multiple temporary recommendations to the States Parties, those related to the travel and tourism industry stand out.

The World Health Organization called for the lifting or relaxation of international traffic bans as they do not provide added value and continue to contribute to the economic and social stress experienced by States Parties. The failure of travel restrictions introduced after the detection and notification of the Omicron variant to limit the international spread of Omicron demonstrates the ineffectiveness of such measures over time. Travel measures (masking, testing, isolation or quarantine, and vaccination) should be based on risk assessments and avoid placing financial burden on international travelers in accordance with IHR Article 40. WHO advice for international traffic in relation to the Omicron variant of SARS-CoV-2

The WHO highlighted that it is not appropriate to require proof of vaccination against COVID-19 for international travel as the only route or condition due to limited global access and uneven distribution of inoculants. States Parties should consider a risk-based approach to facilitating international traffic by lifting or modifying measures.

In addition, the WHO recommended recognizing all vaccines they have received on the emergency use list and all heterologous vaccine combinations according to SAGE recommendations, including in the context of international travel. States Parties are also requested to support research to derive the optimal vaccination strategy to reduce infection, morbidity and mortality.

Source: Twitter @WHO

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