Digital COVID-19 vaccination certificates possible in early August with local government help - DICT

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, July 10) — Digital COVID-19 vaccination certificates may be issued in early August with the help of local governments, an official said Saturday.

Information and Communications Undersecretary Manny Caintic said this target is possible if local governments are able to submit the names of immunized people so data may be uploaded on the vaccine information management system.

"Kung naisubmit na ng mga LGUs ang kanilang listahan come July 31, pwede na tayo mag-issue ng vaccine certificate, at pwede ‘yan gamitin for international travel," he said in a briefing.

[Translation: If the LGUs can submit their lists come July 31, we can begin giving vaccine certificates, which can be used for international travel.]

"Ang atin pong hinihintay ay sapat na datos galing sa mga LGU (local government units)... para sa ganun, 'pag mag-request naman ang isang tao ng isang vaccine certificate, nandoon ang record niya most likely," he added.

[Translation: We are awaiting enough data from the LGUs...so that when a vaccinated individual requests for a vaccine certificate, we have their record.]

Caintic said the agency developed a system in line with digital certificate standards of the World Health Organization.

The DICT's plan is to create a mobile application that will contain a digital version of the vaccination card and a QR code that can be scanned if people need to show proof of their COVID-19 immunization to enter an area, Health Undersecretary Maria Vergeire said Friday.

"DICT committed yesterday in the IATF (Inter-Agency Task Force) meeting na meron na tayong sistema. Kailangan lang talaga, local governments have to cooperate and submit every day itong listahan nila ng nabakunahan," Vergeire said in an online media forum.

[Translation: DICT committed yesterday in the IATF meeting that we already have a system in place. But the local governments have to cooperate and submit their lists of vaccinated individuals.]

Caintic confirmed Vergeire's statement.

Meanwhile, Vergeire urged local governments to issue vaccination cards that cannot be faked.

"We really need to use technology so it is going to be tamper-proof...because if you use technology, you can easily verify these vaccination cards," she said.

These updates came after the pandemic task force said local governments can now allow fully vaccinated individuals to present their COVID-19 immunization cards instead of negative COVID-19 test results before entry to their localities. Issues like tampering were also raised.

The IATF later clarified it is up to the local government to require fully vaccinated travelers to still present negative test results.

READ: IATF releases protocols for fully vaccinated individuals