250.000 people in Switzerland to lose 2G status from February
250.000 people are expected to lose their 2G COVID certificate status from February 1, after the Swiss government shortened the validity period of a vaccination certificate from 365 days to 270. Up to 70.000 people who are fully vaccinated but not boosted could lose their COVID certificate every week, according to a survey by Schweizer Radio und Fernsehen (SRF).
Shortened validity of COVID certificates to align Switzerland with EU
The decision to shorten the validity of the certificate is designed to align Switzerland with the EU, which also shortened the validity of its passes from February 1. While this is unlikely to affect those who are boosted, anyone else who received a vaccination or recovery certificate before or on May 6, 2021 will see their “2G” status invalidated.
2G status is awarded to those who have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and is used to access most businesses. International travel in some cases relies on a vaccination certificate and some international companies have made it a requirement for workers.
Up to 350.000 certificates will be invalidated each week
According to the Federal Office of Public Health, the change in validity will affect several hundred thousand people in Switzerland who chose to receive the original vaccination but not the booster. According to a survey by SRF, 250.000 people have already been affected by the loss of the certificate. They estimate that 170.000 to 350.000 certificates will be made invalid every week.
The loss of certificates will also affect businesses that rely on valid passes to operate, like restaurants and bars. A spokesperson for GastroSuisse, the industry association for restaurants, said that they “will definitely notice a slight drop in the number of guests.”
The organisation hopes that the certificate will soon be scrapped, as more and more people find themselves unable to visit restaurants and entertainment venues. While Alain Berset, the Swiss Health Minister, has indicated that the days of the certificate may be numbered, no clear indication has been given by the government.