Restrictions in Europe for people who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 could evolve with the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) developing scenarios for when physical distancing rules can be lifted.
The ECDC says that when individuals are fully vaccinated against COVID-19, they could relax the use of face-masks and social distancing.
People who are fully vaccinated could also meet unvaccinated people who are not at risk of severe COVID-19 without face masks, the agency says.
“It’s a cautious recognition of the fact that when people are vaccinated the risk of transmission is reduced and also the risk of in particularly getting seriously ill is very significantly reduced,” Martin McKee, a Professor of European Public Health at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, told Euronews.
“But of course reduced is not the same thing as eliminating any risk at all there are still risks so it is quite cautious.”
He warned that there were caveats however because of the prevailing epidemiological situation and the spread of more contagious variants.
“As long as this virus is being transmitted anywhere in the world there is a risk of mutations,” McKee said. Some of those mutations could make the virus more transmissible.
“A lot of it will depend on the prevalence of the infection in the community. If we can get that right down then I think people will be more confident and we can relax the restrictions more,” he said.
“But we absolutely should not see vaccines as a silver bullet that will solve this problem.”
Watch Euronews’ full report in the player above.