The United States will accept WHO-approved COVID-19 vaccines for international visitors

A logo is pictured outside a World Health Organization (WHO) building during an Executive Board meeting on the latest developments in the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Geneva, Switzerland, April 6, 2021. REUTERS/DENIS PALIBUS/FILE PHOTO

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said late Friday that the United States will accept international visitors’ use of COVID-19 vaccines licensed by US regulators or the World Health Organization.

On September 20, the White House announced that in November the United States would lift travel restrictions on air travelers from 33 countries including China, India, Brazil and most of Europe who have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19. It has not yet determined which vaccines will be accepted.

A CDC spokeswoman told Reuters Friday, “Six vaccines approved/approved by the Food and Drug Administration or listed for emergency use by the World Health Organization will meet the criteria for travel to the United States.”

Late Friday, the CDC said that “earlier this week, to help them set up their systems, we notified airlines” of which vaccines would be accepted and added, “The CDC will release additional guidance and information as travel requirements are finalised.” .

Airlines for America, a trade group representing American Airlines (AAL.O)Delta Airlines (from N)United Airlines and others said they were “pleased with the CDC’s decision to approve the list of authorized vaccinations for travelers entering the United States. We look forward to working with the administration to implement this new global vaccine and testing framework by early November 2021.”

Some countries have lobbied the Biden administration to accept WHO-approved vaccines, because vaccines authorized by the US Food and Drug Administration are not widely used in all countries.

The United States will accept fully vaccinated air travelers from the 26 Schengen countries in Europe plus Britain, Ireland, China, India, South Africa, Iran and Brazil. The unprecedented US restrictions have banned most non-US citizens who have been in those countries in the past 14 days.

The new COVID-19 vaccine requirements will now apply to nearly all foreign nationals traveling to the United States — including those not subject to previous restrictions.

The CDC has yet to finalize and publish new contract-tracing rules for international visitors, which it sent to the White House for review on September 15.

The CDC should also detail rules for exclusions, which include children who are not yet eligible for the injection, as well as for visitors from countries where vaccines are not widely available. The administration must also decide whether it will accept visitors as part of clinical trials for COVID-19 or who have recently contracted COVID-19 and are not yet eligible for vaccination.

David Shepardson News. Editing by Leslie Adler and David Gregorio

Our criteria: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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