Digital vaccination certificates to be issued next month

Sheila Crisostomo - The Philippine Star
Digital vaccination certificates to be issued next month
A Bureau of Quarantine employee shows the International Certificate of Vaccination, or yellow card, at its satellite office at the SM Mall of Asia in Pasay City (August 12, 2021). The yellow card is temporarily issued to travelers who have been fully vaccinated against COVID while the government works on a uniform digital vaccination card.
Krizjohn Rosales, file

MANILA, Philippines — The issuance of COVID-19 vaccination certificates is expected to start next month, the Bureau of Quarantine (BOQ) said yesterday.

At a public briefing yesterday, BOQ deputy director Roberto Salvador Jr. noted the government is now speeding up the system for the launch of digital vaccination certificates. The target is to start the issuance in September.

“We are part of the Technical Working Group that is working on this digital vaccination card, with the DICT in the lead,” he said, referring to the Department of Information and Communication Technology.

Salvador added it would be the Department of Foreign Affairs that would coordinate with other countries so that the “official vaccination certificates” would be recognized internationally.

Under the program, local government units will have to upload the names of individuals who completed their COVID-19 jabs on the vaccination information system.

Salvador said that for the meantime, those going abroad may secure the International Certificate of Vaccination or Prophylaxis (ICVP) or yellow card from the BOQ.

“They can show the yellow card to their country of destination. The yellow card indicates the vaccines that they have received,” he added.

According to Salvador, 196 countries that are signatories to the World Heath Organization since 1935 recognize the card.

But the official appealed to those who have no immediate schedule to travel abroad not to apply for yellow card yet.

“You can apply through our online booking system. But we do not encourage anyone to apply if they do not have immediate schedule to leave,” he said.

Salvador added that due to the huge volume of applicants, they are running out of slots for those already set to leave, particularly the migrant workers. – Edu Punay

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