Government asks for views on covid-19 certification

The government has launched a two-week consultation on the role of Covid-status certification in the UK's recovery from the pandemic

As set out last month in the Prime Minister’s Covid-19 roadmap, the government is looking at whether certification could help to reopen the economy, reduce restrictions on social contact and improve safety.

Covid-19 status certification involves using testing or vaccination data to confirm in different settings that people have a lower risk of transmitting Covid-19 to others.

 The current roadmap will see non-essential shops reopen on 12 April while pubs will be allowed to serve food and drinks in outside settings. A further loosening of the roadmap is planned for 17 May when indoor hospitality will reopen. The plan is to aim for a 21 June end to all current restrictions.

The review - which is being led by Michael Gove, the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster - is considering the ethical, equalities, privacy, legal and operational aspects of a possible certification scheme, and what limits, if any, should be placed on organisations using certification.

The government has published a call for evidence to ensure that the review considers a broad range of interests and concerns.

The Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, Michael Gove said: ‘This review into Covid-status certification is an important part of our plan to help reopen the country and return to normal.  However, we recognise that there are complex issues of ethics, privacy and inclusion that need to be fully considered. That is why I want to get as many views as possible on Covid-status certification and its potential implications to help inform the review.’

The government has committed to concluding its review into Covid-status certification ahead of step four of the lockdown easing plan, which will happen no earlier than 21 June.

The call for evidence is open for two weeks from Monday 15 March to Monday 29 March.

Sara White |Editor, Accountancy Daily, published by Croner-i

Sara White is editor of Accountancy Daily, published by Croner-i, and in...

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