“We are closely monitoring the use of technology in the fight against Covid-19 and working with member states on what could be an electronic vaccination certificate," said an expert from the World Health Organisation (WHO) Europe subsidiary, Siddhartha Datta, at an online press conference.

According to the same expert, such a certification, which would allow the identification and monitoring of vaccinated persons, is not finalised and should be drawn up in accordance with national legislation.

"It is not a passport of immunity, supposed to ensure that its holder is protected against the disease. We do not recommend immunity passports," emphasised Catherine Smallwood, WHO Emergency Officer.

On 2 December, the UK was the first country in the world to approve the Pfizer-BioNTech coronavirus vaccine, which the European Medicines Agency is due to vote on by 29 December.

The WHO's European zone, which includes 53 countries including Russia, has recorded over 19.3 million cases and over 433,000 deaths since the pandemic began, indicates the organisation's surveillance table. Of these, 1.5 million cases have been recorded in the last seven days.

"If we see a slight decrease in the number of cases in Western Europe, it does not mean that the WHO European region as a whole is facing an improvement in the epidemiological situation (...), the countries most affected are now the centre and south of Europe," Hans Kluge, WHO/Europe head, pointed out, calling on European governments not to "lower their guard" and prevention.

In the event of a fall in contamination rates, Hans Kluge argued that the states should take advantage of the moment to "strengthen the public health infrastructure", thus preparing the medical and health system "for the next wave".