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Italy’s ‘Green Pass’ not increasing vaccine take-up rates


An employee shows her "Green Pass", a document showing proof of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) immunity, in an office in Rome, Italy, September 16, 2021. REUTERS/Yara Nardi

Data shows that the attempts to boost vaccination in Italy, through forcing a health pass in work areas, have failed.

The government of PM Mario Draghi said last month that starting from October 15, workers need to present the Pass.

He said any worker who doesn’t present the “Green Pass” will be suspended with no pay.

The step was in the hope of convincing anti-vaxxers in Italy to take the vaccination.

Renato Brunetta, the Public Administration Minister, said the measure would trigger a huge acceleration of vaccination.

However, the effect did not seem to materialize.

In the week before last to the deadline, ~410,000 people received a first shot, according to COVID-commissioner’s office data.

Evidently, this is a decline of 36% from the estimates the week before, and the lowest estimate since July’s beginning.

At first, the announcement triggered an acceleration in vaccination shots, which increased by 11% in the week after September 16.

However, it remained below the average rate of the earlier two weeks.

There was an additional increase of 15% in the week from September 24 to October 1, before last week’s decline.

Health Pass in other countries

Many countries have made the pass a requirement to access places like museums, gyms, restaurants, but none of them forced it to all employees; this made Italy the test country for the continent.

Approaching October 15, employers in the industrial north warn they will face staff lack.

Moreover, Italy’s heads say it would be impossible to test all workers who refuse the vaccine.

More than 10,000 people protested in Rome against the Green Pass, and the protest turned violent.

Hundreds of protesters, including Neo-Fascists, clashed with police and stormed Italy’s largest trade union offices.

Draghi forced the pass, even though the vaccine campaign was successful and Covid-19 infections declined.

The government reached its vaccination target on Saturday, which is fully vaccinating 80% of people aged above 12 before the end of September.



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