UK adds Sinopharm to approved vaccine list

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London, Nov. 9 (BNA): Britain said it would recognise COVID-19 vaccines on the World Health Organization's Emergency Use Listing later this month, adding China's Sinovac (SVA.O), Sinopharm and India's Covaxin to the country's approved list of vaccines for inbound travellers.


“From 4am on Monday 22 November, the government will recognise vaccines on the World Health Organization’s Emergency Use Listing (WHO EUL),” the government said.


“As a result, Sinovac, Sinopharm Beijing and Covaxin will be added to our list of approved vaccines for inbound travel. The US also recognises the vaccines on the WHO EUL for inbound travel.


“Passengers who have been fully vaccinated and have received their vaccine certificate from one of over 135 approved countries and territories are not required to take a pre-departure test, day 8 test or self-isolate upon arrival. Instead, passengers will just need to pay for a lateral flow test to take before the end of their second day, post-arrival.


“From 4am on Monday 22 November, we will recognise the following vaccines: Pfizer BioNTech, Oxford AstraZeneca (including Covishield), Moderna and Janssen (J&J), and WHO EUL including Sinovac, Sinopharm Beijing and Covaxin.


“This comes as the government simplifies travel rules for all under-18s coming to England who will be treated as fully vaccinated at the border and will be exempt from self-isolation requirements on arrival, day 8 testing and pre-departure testing. They will only be required to take 1 post-arrival test and a confirmatory free PCR test if they test positive.”


“As we continue to recover from the pandemic and expand our recognition of international vaccines, today’s announcements mark the next step in our restart of international travel,” Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said.


“By also simplifying the rules for international travel for all under-18s coming to England, we’re bringing further good news for families looking to unite with loved ones, and another great boost for the travel sector.”


Health and Social Care Secretary Sajid Javid said that the announcement “is another step forward for the travel industry, businesses and for family and friends wanting to reunite or go abroad.”


“The red list and quarantine system remain vital in protecting our borders and as we’ve said we will not hesitate to take action by adding countries to the red list, if necessary,” he said.


In its statement, the government said it keeps its border measures under review, including the red list, and will impose restrictions should there be a need to do so to protect public health.


“The WHO EUL Procedure was brought in during the 2014 Ebola outbreak to assess vaccines for use and to support countries in accessing vaccines (and other selected products) during public health emergencies. Sinovac, Sinopharm Beijing and Covaxin are covered by the expansion to the WHO EUL, and around 1 billion doses of these vaccines have been delivered worldwide,” it said.


“The news follows the recent removal of all countries and territories from the red list, though managed quarantine policy remains in place and we will continue to review the red list every 3 weeks.”