The Government has ordered a review into whether “Covid-status certification” should be used to speed up the end of lockdown. Mr Johnson admitted the passports were being considered this afternoon when he unveiled his plan to end the restrictions currently in place in England.
Addressing MPs in the House of Commons, Mr Johnson said a review would be carried out to see if the introduction of such measures could play a role in “helping venues to open safely”.
The announcement comes after weeks of the Government ruling out introducing vaccine passports for Brits to go about their daily lives.
Earlier this month Vaccine Deployment Minister Nadhim Zahawi said it would be “discriminatory” for proof of a jab to be required before to enter shops or pubs.
Mr Zahawi said at the time the Government had “no plans” to introduce such measures.
“That’s not how we do things in the UK,” he added.
Mr Johnson said this afternoon a study would be conducted in the coming weeks to assess the benefits of passports.
The research would consider whether proof of a vaccine or a negative coronavirus test could be required for Brits to enter certain venues.
It would be one of four reviews conducted as part of easing the current restrictions.
Outlining each review, Mr Johnson said: “The third review will consider potential role of Covid status certification in helping venues to open safely.
“We are mindful of the many concerns surrounding the exclusion, discrimination and privacy.”
The other reviews will look at when social distancing measures and the requirement of face masks in indoor public spaces could be scrapped, as well as when international travel can safely resume.
“Our journey back towards normality will be subject to resolving a number of key questions and to do this we will conduct four reviews,” the Prime Minister said.
Under the roadmap outlined most coronavirus restrictions could be lifted completely by June 21.
“The end really is in sight and a wretched year will give way to a spring and a summer that will be very different and incomparably better than the picture we see around us today,” he said.
“We are able to take these steps because of the resolve of the British public and the extraordinary success of our NHS in vaccinating more than 17.5 million people across the UK.”
More to follow…