The World Economic Forum and The Commons Project Foundation today welcomed the Airport Council International (ACI) World, representing nearly 2,000 airports globally and five leading global airlines, as members of the CommonTrust Network, just before roll-out of CommonPass begins in December in support of the safer reopening of borders.
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"The members of the CommonTrust Network are coming together to implement an inclusive global network designed to empower individuals with digital access to their health information so they can protect and improve their health and demonstrate their health status to safely return to travel, work, school and life, while protecting their data privacy," said Paul Meyer, CEO of The Commons Project Foundation. "We welcome collaboration with public and private stakeholders across many sectors, including ACI World and IATA in aviation."
"As the world works to overcome the pandemic, all countries face the challenge of how to reopen borders for travel and commerce while protecting their populations' health," ACI World Director General Luis Felipe de Oliveira said. "Key to this will be a globally-harmonised approach underpinned by cooperation and consistency between all players in the aviation industry."
"The CommonTrust Network and CommonPass will help to foster this consistent approach, especially as it will include more than just the aviation industry," said de Oliveira.
CommonPass was first successfully trialed in October on Cathay Pacific Airways and United Airlines flights between Hong Kong, Singapore, London, and New York. Government observers of the trials included the United States Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) and the United Kingdom Border Force and Ministry for Transport.
CommonTrust Network airlines JetBlue, Lufthansa, Swiss International Airlines, United Airlines, and Virgin Atlantic will begin the roll-out of CommonPass in December on select flights departing from New York, Boston, London, and Hong Kong.
CommonTrust Network airport labs include XpresCheck (JFK, EWR, BOS), Collinson (LHR, LGW) and Prenetics (HKG).
This support from the world's airports for the CommonTrust Network and CommonPass comes a week after the three airline alliances - oneworld, SkyTeam, and Star Alliance - called for a globally harmonised approach for validation and authentication of testing and vaccination, highlighting CommonPass.
"The recent digital 'health pass' trials, such as CommonPass, are presenting a strong case for using digital technology to deliver harmonised standards in the validation and verification of accredited passenger health data," said the statement from airline alliances, whose 58 member airlines represent over 60% of world airline capacity.
"Together with our partners, we support all efforts to make travelling under Coronavirus conditions safer and easier in the future. We are pleased that Lufthansa Group airlines can be pioneers on selected routes in the USA and Europe by offering the use of CommonPass to our passengers," said Christina Foerster, Lufthansa Group Executive Board Member Customer, IT and Corporate Responsibility.
"Through our 'Safety from the Ground Up' programme, JetBlue has been a leader in providing a layered approach to safety on the ground and in the air, including being the first US airline to require facial coverings," said Joanna Geraghty, president, and chief operating officer, JetBlue. "We are excited to be one of the first airlines in the world to partner with CommonPass to provide another layer of safety to air travel in the United States and around the world. Reliable testing, combined with digital health passes, is another way to restore customer confidence and safely restore air travel."
"United has consistently demonstrated its leadership in developing innovative solutions to help ensure a safer travel experience for our customers during these challenging times, which now includes being one of the first airlines to join the CommonTrust Network," said Steve Morrissey, United's vice president, regulatory and policy. "We were proud to be the first US carrier to trial CommonPass on 21st October from London Heathrow to Newark. Testing is a key component of our multi-layered approach to safely reopening travel and ensuring our customers' wellbeing, and we look forward to using technology platforms like CommonPass to provide travelers and governments confidence in verified COVID-19 testing results."
"Our partnership with CommonPass adds to the multi-layered health and safety measures that Virgin Atlantic has in place to ensure that our customers fly safe and well. Ahead of a vaccine, ensuring customers understand the latest testing requirements to travel is vital to building consumer confidence and the CommonPass solution is an important step towards offering a common international standard," said Corneel Koster, Chief Customer and Operating Officer, Virgin Atlantic. "We expect governments to move with urgency towards aligned testing standards and in parallel, to implement a robust pre-departure testing regime that supports international travel, safely replaces quarantine as soon as possible and enables the skies to reopen at scale."
"As the Forum, we are committed to bringing our health, supply chain, aviation, and maritime sectors together to ensure the success of this global common utility," said Christoph Wolff, Head of Mobility at the World Economic Forum. "The CommonTrust Network is the kind of concrete, swift, cross-sector collaboration needed to enable a unified action to restore confidence in travel. Siloed efforts will only create more confusion and hinder the industry's recovery."
"The members of the CommonTrust Network are coming together to implement an inclusive global network designed to empower individuals with digital access to their health information so they can protect and improve their health, and demonstrate their health status to safely return to travel, work, school, and life, while protecting their data privacy," said Paul Meyer, CEO of The Commons Project Foundation. "We welcome collaboration with key stakeholders across all sectors, including IATA in aviation."
The CommonTrust Network is enabled by a global network of labs, vaccine distributors, and health care providers that agree to provide individuals with digital access to their own health information using open, globally-interoperable standards (e.g. HL7 FHIR, W3C verifiable credentials). The network includes hundreds of health systems covering thousands of locations in the United States and a growing network of labs and health care providers around the world.
"Airport COVID testing and a safe, consistent approach to digital information management are key unlock to restoring passenger confidence in air travel. XpresCheck is very pleased to be a lab and testing partner in the CommonTrust Network," XpresCheck's Chief Executive Officer Doug Satzman said. "New York and Boston represent major commercial hubs to the world which can soon be activated through innovative partnerships like this."
"We're proud to be part of this collaboration, and working with CommonTrust Network and other partners to create a solution that will help more people return to work and travel safely during the pandemic and beyond," said Joan Harvey, president of care coordination at Cigna. "We're committed to fostering advancements in digital health, and look forward to bringing simple solutions like CommonPass to our international clients and customers."