White House COVID-19 Response Coordinator Jeffrey Zients announced in a briefing on Monday that the government would not be exploring the issuing of federally mandated "vaccine passports" in the US.
Zients, joined by CDC Director Dr. Rochelle P. Walensky and Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease Dr. Anthony Fauci, fielded questions regarding COVID-19 response in the country.
One woman asked, "Does that mean you're just going to leave it up to every state to track it? What is your plan if people lose their vaccination cards? It just seems like it could become kind of a hot mess if someone is not overseeing everyone's vaccinations?"
"Let me be clear that the is not now nor will we be supporting a system that requires Americans to carry a credential," responded Zients. "There'll be no federal vaccination database, no federal mandate requiring everyone to obtain a single vaccination credential."
Zients said in addition that if the idea is considered by private businesses, that the government would be keeping an eye on personal privacy associated with those systems.
"As these tools are being considered by the private and not for profit sectors our interests is simple and that's about protecting American's privacy and their rights so that systems aren't used unfairly," Zients added.
He assured the government will make sure that consumer protections are the highest priority for those entities that do consider vaccine credentials.
"So we will make sure that consumer's protections are first and foremost in the private and not for profit sector efforts but there will be no government, federal government system in place," said Zients.
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