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Vaccine Passports – Legal and Policy Issues

Vaccine Passports – Legal and Policy Issues

Vaccine passports are here. But how should we manage them, and how far should we go?

COVID-19 vaccine passports/certificates have been advanced as a tool to help safely reopen society and speed a return to normal life, as well as a way of motivating hesitant people to become vaccinated. Already in use in different countries and regions across the world, Canada is following close behind and will soon have proof-of-vaccination requirements and digital passport systems in place across the country (as of fall 2021). But uncertainty and suspicion about how they will or should be used continues to make vaccine passports highly controversial. Our team's work aims to investigate and advise on legal and policy issues around vaccine passports' rationale and design, the government's proper role in regulating them, and persistent related concerns over privacy, equity, liberty, and coercion.

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September 27, 2021

Vaccine Passports/Certificates – Law, Ethics & Policy

Colleen M. Flood
Director and Professor of Law
Centre for Health Law, Policy and Ethics
University of Ottawa

Vivek Krishnamurthy
Director and Professor of Law
Samuelson-Glushko Canadian Internet Policy and Public Interest Clinic
University of Ottawa

Bryan Thomas
Senior Research Associate
Centre for Health Law, Policy and Ethics
University of Ottawa

Kumanan Wilson
Physician, Department of Medicine
The Ottawa Hospital / Bruyère
Founder and Chief Executive Officer
CANImmunize

Team Leads

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Colleen Flood

Colleen Flood

Professor
Faculty of Law
University of Ottawa

Colleen M. Flood is Professor at the University of Ottawa and a University Research Chair in Health Law & Policy. She is also inaugural Director of the University of Ottawa Centre for Health Law, Policy and Ethics. From 2000–2015 she was a Professor and Canada Research Chair at the Faculty of Law, University of Toronto, with cross-appointments to the School of Public Policy and the Institute of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation. From 2006–2011 she served as Scientific Director at the Canadian Institute for Health Services and Policy Research (CIHR). Her primary areas of scholarship are comparative health care law and policy, public/private financing of health care systems, health care reform, constitutional law, administrative law, and accountability and governance issues more broadly.

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Team

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Jennifer Gibson

Jennifer Gibson

Director
University of Toronto Joint Centre for Bioethics

Professor Jennifer Gibson is Sun Life Financial Chair in Bioethics and Director, Joint Centre for Bioethics at the University of Toronto. Jennifer has a PhD in Philosophy (bioethics and political theory). Her program of research and teaching focuses on health system and policy ethics. She is particularly interested in the role and interaction of values in decision-making at different levels in the health system. Jennifer has advised government on policy issues such as public health emergencies, critical care triage, drug funding and supply, and medical assistance in dying. She has chaired numerous advisory groups and panels national and international, for example the Provincial-Territorial Expert Advisory Group on Physician-Assisted Dying, which informed the development of Canada's legal framework for medical assistance in dying.

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Vivek Krishnamurthy

Vivek Krishnamurthy

Professor
Faculty of Law
University of Ottawa

Vivek Krishnamurthy is the Samuelson-Glushko Professor of Law and Director of the Samuelson-Glushko Canadian Internet Policy and Public Interest Clinic (CIPPIC). Vivek’s teaching, scholarship, and clinical legal practice focus on the complex regulatory and human rights-related challenges that arise in cyberspace. He advises governments, activists, and companies on the human rights impacts of new technologies and is a frequent public commentator on emerging technology and public policy issues. Along with his former colleagues at Harvard’s Berkman Klein Center, Vivek is the author of a landmark study for Global Affairs Canada that evaluates the risks and opportunities for human rights that artificially intelligent systems present. Vivek is a Rhodes Scholar and clerked for the Hon. Morris J. Fish of the Supreme Court of Canada upon his graduation from Yale Law School. Vivek is currently a Fellow at the Carr Center for Human Rights Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School, an Affiliate of the Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University, and a Senior Associate of the Human Rights Initiative at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, D.C.

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Ryan Tanner

Ryan Tanner

LL.M. Candidate
Faculty of Law
University of Ottawa

Ryan Tanner has PhD in philosophy from University of Calgary and a JD from University of Toronto. He previously taught medical ethics in the nursing degree program at the University of Calgary in Qatar, clerked at the Ontario Health Professions Appeal and Review Board, and articled in the legal services department at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre. He is currently an LLM candidate at the University of Ottawa faculty of law with a specialization in health law, policy and ethics.

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Bryan Thomas

Bryan Thomas

Research Associate
Faculty of Law
University of Ottawa

Bryan Thomas is a Senior Research Associate with the Centre for Health Law, Policy and Ethics and Adjunct Professor with the Faculty of Law, University of Ottawa. His research spans a wide range of topics including Canadian and comparative health law and policy, health rights litigation, long-term care, global health law, and the role of religious argument in legal and political discourse. Dr. Thomas holds an SJD from University of Toronto and a Master’s degree in philosophy from Dalhousie.

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Kumanan Wilson

Kumanan Wilson

Physician
Department of Medicine

The Ottawa Hospital / Bruyère


Dr. Kumanan Wilson is a specialist in General Internal Medicine at The Ottawa Hospital and Innovation Advisor for Bruyère. He is also a Professor and Faculty of Medicine Clinical Research Chair in Digital Health Innovation at the University of Ottawa, and a member of the University of Ottawa Centre for Health Law, Policy and Ethics. Dr. Wilson is also the CEO and founder of CANImmunize, a science-based technology company specializing in immunization software that spun out from The Ottawa Hospital in 2019. Dr. Wilson’s research focuses on digital health, immunization, pandemic preparedness and public health policy and innovation. His research on immunization has explored social media’s impact on vaccine hesitancy, evaluation of vaccine safety using health services data and vaccine policy, including advocating for vaccine injury compensation. Other research interests include blood safety and newborn screening, health ethics, law and policy.

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