Doctor's Review: Medicine on the Move

August 23, 2017
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The new US border rules

The United States’ forthcoming rule requiring visitors by car to show their passports comes into force next summer, on June 1, 2009. The new rule, an element of the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative, promises to present a real hassle for Canadians who haven’t renewed their passports lately. One solution is a joint US-Canadian pre-screening program called NEXUS (http://www.cbsa-asfc.gc.ca/prog/nexus/menu-eng.html), which allows you to bypass the passport requirement when travelling by car – but only if you cross the border at one of the 14 NEXUS-equipped border stations. Even better is the idea of an “enhanced driver’s licence,” or EDL. British Columbia has already issued hundreds of EDLs in a small pilot program that will likely be expanded to the entire province in the spring; Ontario has expressed interest as well. The EDL idea has attracted a great deal of attention and some hesitant admiration, but a statement issued last month by the federal and all the provincial privacy commissioners warned of security and privacy concerns about the licences.

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