COVID-19 vaccine
COVID-19 vaccineiStock

The Biden administration is developing a plan that would require most international travelers entering the US from all countries to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19, a White House official said Wednesday, according to The Hill.

The US is keeping international travel restrictions in place for the time being due to the spread of the delta variant and rising domestic cases of the coronavirus. The new plan would be operationalized when the US begins to lift restrictions on international travel.

The White House official said that interagency working groups are currently working to develop a plan for “a consistent and safe international travel policy” that would involve a phased approach that would require foreign nationals traveling to the US to be fully vaccinated “with limited exceptions.”

“Currently, the interagency working groups are developing a policy and planning process to be prepared for when the time is right to transition to this new system,” the official was quoted by The Hill as having said.

It is unclear precisely when the US will lift restrictions on travel from Mexico, Canada, Europe and other countries. The White House said in late July that it would keep restrictions in place, citing the delta variant.

Coronavirus cases have recently been on the rise again in the US as vaccination rates have slowed. The Biden administration is working to convince millions of eligible Americans who have not yet gotten vaccinated to do so as quickly as possible.

As of the start of August, about 70 percent of US adults have received at least one dose of the coronavirus vaccine.

US President Joe Biden recently directed all federal employees and onsite contractors to show that they are vaccinated or otherwise submit to regular coronavirus testing.

Biden also instructed his administration to apply similar standards to all federal government contractors. The White House said it will encourage private sector employers to follow his lead.