HAVING broken a tooth, I had to contact my dentist. Quite rightly, I was asked numerous questions about my health and other Covid related issues.

No doubt it was to ensure the safety of the staff – but the question arises as to whether the staff had been vaccinated to protect my safety?

Recently it was mooted that ‘vaccine passports’ could be implemented by the government through downloading them onto individual patients’ NHS apps on their phones.

Research identifies that the vaccine cuts the number of asymptomatic infections and significantly reduces the risk of transmission.

Therefore, when opening up the economy, it is evident people would have far greater confidence in visiting pubs, cinemas, and other indoor establishments if they knew that not only were the other users vaccinated, but the staff as well.

It is predicted the vaccine roll-out will have offered every adult a jab by July and therefore there would be no direct financial cost to either employers or employees.

Furthermore, foreign holidays would become far more attractive if travellers knew the other passengers on their flight had also had the vaccine.

In addition, it should see other countries accepting us more readily if they knew we had done as much as practical to curtail the spread of the virus at our end.

However, there are civil rights issues concerning vaccine passports. Some people don’t want the actual vaccine, while others consider it is wrong for it to be conditional for getting or maintaining a job. Nevertheless, these objections appear to be far outweighed by the benefits of vaccine passports in ensuring an increased level of personal safety for the vast majority.

Tom Parkin, Howden le Wear.