EU Vaccination Passport and affordable covid tests, or?

The entire EU is still at state of alert since the fear about new ways of COVID-19 pandemic keep Member States tense. Governments do not favour travel activities but, for instance, running a business, there are moments that require to have face-to-face meetings across the EU states. Also, having a sunbath in South of Europe should not be taken as luxury as people from northern countries need sunlight to keep up their energy level.

Therefore, the EU is working on the common digital vaccination certification framework in order to help people crossing the borders. This would help to solve one of the current problems. Namely, despite the fact that the covid vaccines are developed by the same manufacturers, the certification of being vaccinated with respective vaccine in one of the Member State may not be valid in another Member State.

The EU Vaccination Passport would work well for people who are vaccinated. But when you are traveling a lot and you’re not vaccinated, the costs of tests can easily amass to nearly 1000€ per month. In Spain, the test can cost around 145€. In Finland, up to 240€.

Is the EU ready to talk about max prices in medical sector?

On 29 February 2016, the Commission pointed out that “pursuant to Article 168 of the Treaty of the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU), the Union’s actions in the field of public health must respect the responsibilities of the Member States for the organisation and delivery of health services and medical care. It is the responsibility of each Member State to ensure appropriate access to high quality healthcare for its citizens.

The Commission explained that “in this framework, the national authorities have the capacity to set the prices of medical products (and medical appliances) and to determine their reimbursement conditions under the national social security system.”[1]

So far the issue around any price limitations on medical products and medical appliances have been blacklisted by the Council but now, since the situation is quite tense, we may see some unusual changes in that matter.

[1] COM replay to petition 2128/2014 by Juan-Luis de Javier I Mari (Spanish) on the need of EU provisions to allow the cancelation of some pharmaceutical patents.

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