Tech giants team up on Covid-19 vaccine passports

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Some of the biggest technology firms and healthcare organizations team up to implement a digital vaccination scheme, the “Vaccine Credential Initiative”, which can be used internationally to check the vaccination status of COVID-19 for individuals. Digital documents can be downloaded on smartphones and can be used for anything from air travel and day-to-day purposes, as reported by CNN

A broad range of healthcare and technology giants, including Microsoft, Oracle, Salesforce and Epic, as well as the Mayo Clinic, Safe Health, Change Healthcare, etc., are part of the Vaccine Credential Initiative.

The Vaccine Credential Initiative seeks to develop a fully accessible, standardized model for how digital records of immunizations can be provided to patients who want them by hospitals, pharmacies and clinics administering Covid-19 vaccines. 

The Covid-19 vaccination record also needs to be verifiable and safe, otherwise an individual might try to fake having received the Covid-19 vaccine by using the record of someone else. 

In the end, patients are likely to obtain an encrypted, digital copy of the vaccine record that can be kept in a digital wallet, think a QR code. For instance, an airport gate agent may therefore confirm that a person has been vaccinated without viewing all their personal health details. 

The tech companies involved in the campaign, with the Vaccine Credential Initiative, would play a key role in ensuring widespread use. For several major health care systems, companies such as Microsoft and Oracle manage the technology infrastructure and can expand on the Covid-19 vaccine credentialing requirements.

It makes sense that a new approach will include a digital version of historic vaccination record systems, given the urgency of solutions that can contribute to a secure re-opening, and a way to keep track on the huge, global vaccination program that is already underway. 

Source: Tech Gist Africa

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