Dr Anthony Fauci hinted at the idea that the coronavirus vaccine may be mandatory for those who wished to attend school or travel.
In an interview with Newsweek, Fauci stated that “everything will be on the table for discussion: when asked about coronavirus vaccine passports and mandatory vaccinations. Fauci’s opinions will have some sway in the Biden administration, as he will be assuming the role as Biden’s chief medical advisor.
Fauci did state that he believes there will not be a national vaccine mandate because the federal government typically does not create health mandates, but he said he would not be surprised if institutions, such as hospitals or schools, will require a vaccine.
“For example, influenza and Hepatitis B vaccines are mandated at many hospitals,” said Fauci. “Here at the NIH, I would not be allowed to see patients if I didn’t get vaccinated every year with flu and get vaccinated once with Hepatitis. I have to get certified every year. If I didn’t, I couldn’t see patients.”
“So in that regard I would not be surprised, as we get into the full scope of vaccination, that some companies, some hospitals, some organizations might require vaccination,” said Fauci.
Fauci did hint at the idea that vaccinations could be mandatory for students who attend public schools.
“That is possible but that’s something that’s mandated at the state level and city level,” says Fauci. “A citywide school system might require it in some cities but not other cities. And that’s what I mean by things not being done centrally but locally.”
Fauci stated that he does not know if the vaccine will actually prevent the spread of coronavirus. “We don’t know that vaccinating people prevents infection,” said Fauci. “We certainly know that it prevents symptomatic disease, we don’t know if it prevents infection.”
“That’s the reason why I keep saying that even though you get vaccinated, we should not eliminate, at all, public health measures like wearing masks because we don’t know yet what the effect is on transmissibility,” said Fauci.
He believes that the coronavirus vaccine might become a “standard travel vaccine.” “Well, you know, of course (it would be good if the vaccine became a “standard travel vaccine”)”, said Fauci. “I mean if everybody gets vaccinated, of course that’s good. But yellow fever’s a good example. So we, in this country, don’t require [people] to get a yellow fever vaccine when you go some place. It’s the place to which you are going that requires it.”
“I went to Liberia during the Ebola outbreak. I had to get my yellow fever vaccine or they would not let me into Liberia.”
Fauci said that he will not be the one making decisions for Biden. “It’s not up to me to make a decision,” said Fauci. “But these are all things that will be discussed.”
In December, Israel became the first country to issue “vaccine passports.”
“This passport will show that a person is vaccinated and will give a number of advantages such as not needing to quarantine, entry to all kinds of culture events, restaurants, and so on,” said Israel’s Health Ministry Director-General Chezy Levy.
State level vaccination mandates historically have been upheld by the Supreme Court. The ruling of Jacobson v. Massachusetts upheld Massachusetts’ smallpox vaccine mandate in 1905. The ruling stated that individual liberty may be restricted in order to protect public health. Any mandates set by state governments are likely to receive a challenge, but this court case remains precedent to this day.