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Ministers are considering whether "vaccine passports" could be used in Britain to reopen nightclubs and other venues.
They could be required to enter pubs, live gigs, theatres and open up other parts of the economy.
Boris Johnson confirmed a study will be carried out into introducing "Covid status certification" as he unveiled his roadmap out of lockdown.
It would involve using testing or vaccination data to confirm people have a lower risk of spreading coronavirus.
The Prime Minister said the review will consider how they could be used to help "venues to open safely".
But it will be "mindful of the many concerns surrounding exclusion, discrimination and privacy", he added.
Mr Johnson told a Downing Street press conference they are “likely to be important” when it comes to international travel, as other countries will “unquestionably insist on them”.
But he admitted there are “clearly some quite complex issues” using them at home, including around discrimination.
He said: “There may well be a role for certification but we just need to get it right.”
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Mr Johnson also admitted he could not guarantee his roadmap out of lockdown would be “irreversible”.
He said: “I cant guarantee that it’s going to be irreversible but the intention is it should be irreversible.
"That’s why we are going in the way that we are.”
But the controversial "vaccine passports'"idea was criticised by civil liberties groups.
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Big Brother Watch said: “A disturbing U-turn in the roadmap.
“And it is precisely because of the exclusion, discrimination and privacy concerns that millions of us will never accept them.”
The review is one of four studies which will look at different aspects of how the UK should handle Covid-19 from summer onwards.
The others will examine the safe return of large events, international travel and social distancing.
Under the roadmap, nightclubs will open from June 21 at the earliest.
Meanwhile Professor Chris Whitty, the Chief Medical Officer, warned the country will have to live with coronavirus for the next few winters.
He said vaccinations will take rates “right down”, but they “will not get rid of this”.
Prof Whitty added: “This is something we have to see for the long term and in my view is likely to be a problem, particularly in the winter for the next few winters.”
- Boris Johnson
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