19 May 2022

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Update on covid passport
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Update on covid passport

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Gradually the position over covid passports is changing – you are going to need them

Do you remember the covid passport? This was the document which was never going to be introduced according to government thinking at the time.

Well this is now a firmly established principle but watch the language because this is gradually changing. As we reported a week or so ago, the NHS app, as opposed to the NHS covid-91 app, enables anyone registered with a local doctor in England to access his medical records; you can even place an order for a repeat prescription via the app. It is useful and friendly.

But fundamentally it also enables you to bring up a record of your covid vaccinations and in a format which looks pretty secure – you get you own Q code scan and your vaccinations are listed there with the dates.

The government now says that you can use this information if you are going to go on holiday and need to demonstrate to a foreign country that you have been vaccinated. The app is sufficiently advanced that you can get a copy of your certificate e mailed to you or download a pdf version. Either way, it is very practicable in demonstrating your status.

It is anticipated that the app will be used for additional purposes as ideas are rolled out. But at the moment there is no requirement to have been vaccinated to go to the pub BUT the government has pointed that there is no prohibition to ask customers for proof of vaccination provided that equality laws are not broken. So if the purpose of asking for proof is simply to determine whether you have been vaccinated or not, it is unlikely that you will be refusing admission contrary to equality laws, merely health considerations.

This is a major step forward because originally the very thought of having to use a covid passport was unthinkable. Mind you the law could change and at one point the Prime Minister did say that perhaps once everyone had been offered a first jab, it may be appropriate to require your passport to go to the pub. If this is going to happen, it will be after July. Depending on how things go, it is highly likely that people will be required, either compulsorily or voluntarily to show their passport in due course.

What the app does not show yet are test results and what would be even more useful would be for the app to show an individual’s level of immunity at any given time. Indeed if you have a high level of immunity because you contracted the disease, you may not need a jab at all.

Still very moving ground so watch this space but above all go and download the app if you haven’t already. You will find it useful.

Adrian Leopard 27-05-21

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