The Canary Islands, the first Spanish region to request the Digital Covid Certificate for customers at various hospitality sector establishments or large events, announced Wednesday.
This news comes after the Canary High Court rejected the request of the regional government to reinstate the curfew in an effort to curb rising infections.
Angel Perez, Canary President, stated Wednesday that “we’re going to attempt to make it so it can’t be possible to access the inside of establishments without having to have a vaccination certificate.”
Perez’s intention to refer to only the vaccination certificate is not clear. This is different from the EU’s Digital Covid Certificate. It applies only to people who have been vaccinated, and not to those who have recovered or been tested.
Perez said, “This doesn’t mean you won’t have the ability to go to your nearest bar or store.” He also stressed that it was still important to research “in which places a health pass should be required, how it should be organised, and what kind of controls should be implemented.”
The Digital Covid Certificate is issued by Spain’s 17 regions. It has been used primarily to facilitate travel.
France’s health passport can be used to show three things: vaccination status, recent negative Covid test, or recovery from Covid.
French President Emmanuel Macron has announced that France’s Pass sanitaire will be vastly expanded over the next month to include a variety of daily holiday activities like going to cafes, restaurants, visiting museums and tourist spots and traveling on long-distance trains or coaches.
After Francesco Figliuolo, coronavirus emergency coordinator for Italy, suggested Monday that people might need an incentive to get vaccinated, the Italian government is reportedly looking at ways to expand the use of its certificazione verde (or ‘green certificate) health pass.
Spain’s vaccine hesitancy isn’t a major problem, but it is a growing problem due to the country’s rising fortnightly infected rate. It has more than quintupled in the past three weeks, now at 502 cases per 100,000 on July 16th.
The prevalence rate of the virus in young adults is three times higher than that among those in their twenties.
Spain’s infection rate is now the highest in Europe, along with Portugal’s and Cyprus’s, thanks to the reopening and spread of the Delta variant, the end of school year, and the low vaccination rate for younger age groups.
The data will show whether the recent tightened restrictions or the closing of nightlife venues in certain regions will have an effect on the incidences of Covid-19. However, Spain could gain more control with a system already in place: the Digital Covid Certificate.
Valencian regional authorities, in addition to the Canary Islands have suggested that they adopt a health card system for entry into cafes, bars and restaurants. However, this was rejected by the hospitality industry due to the delays and queues it will cause.
Regional government of the Balearic Islands is also supportive of health passports for bars and restaurants, as well as nightclubs.
Galicia’s nightclubs require proof of vaccinations or negative Covid tests to enter.
Others, such as Aragon or the Basque Country, have ruled out the possibility that citizens may be required to obtain health passports via QR codes.
Some experts and certain sectors of society consider health passports discriminatory because they limit personal freedoms and privacy.
Spain has imposed limits on Spain’s most iconic Spanish behavior of eating out and drinking out.
Another common trait that could hinder the effectiveness of Spanish health passes is the fact that young Spaniards will always find a way to have fun. If they aren’t allowed inside, they’ll go outside and party as usual. This is botellones, which is street drinking, believed to be responsible for many of the Covid-19-related infections among teenagers.