RIGA - As of February 15, the Latvian Covid-19 vaccine certificates will have a validity period for receipt of services - the certificates that have been issued to people inoculated with Johnson & Johnson vaccine will be valid for five months and all other vaccines will be accepted for nine months, according to amendments to the emergency regulations approved by the government on Thursday.
In order to maintain protection against the virus, a booster shot is needed after the validity period expires. Covid-19 certificate will be validated again right after administration of a booster shot, and after that the certificate will not have a set expiration date.
The validity period will not be applied on Covid-19 certificates of children up to the age of 18 as booster shots for this group are not available yet. The validity period will not be applied on certificates of people who have completed the primary vaccination and have recovered from Covid-19.
The validity period of the vaccine certificates will not apply to employment, although Janis Citskovskis, director of the State Chancellery and head of the Operative Management Group, told the government meeting that it would be recommended.
The Health Ministry, which drafted the amendments, indicated that the vaccine certificates' validity period for travel will be nine months across the European Union (EU).
Health Minister Daniels Pavluts (Development/For) said after Tuesday's coalition meeting that for those who have completed their vaccination course before September 15, certificates will expire in mid-February. The minister therefore urged people to receive booster doses to renew their certificates.