IE 11 Not Supported

For optimal browsing, we recommend Chrome, Firefox or Safari browsers.

Standardized Digital Vaccination Card Coming Soon to States

Thanks to an initiative involving many public and private organizations, a digital COVID-19 vaccination card has been created using technology from the Boston Children's Hospital. A few states have adopted the card.

COVID-19 Vaccine Card - editorial use only, used once
Shutterstock/vovidzha
(TNS) — Several major technology and health care companies have come together to create the SMART Health Card, a digital COVID-19 vaccination card based on Boston Children’s Hospital technology.

This effort is part of the Vaccination Credential Initiative, a group made up of private and public organizations, including Microsoft, Salesforce, Oracle and the Mayo Clinic, with a goal to create trustworthy and verifiable proof of vaccination.

As an increasing number of companies institute vaccine mandates for customers and employers, the durability of paper cards issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention remains in question. The SMART Health card presents a more secure option and therefore is being rolled out throughout the United States.

“We’ve gotten most of the big health care technology vendors in the country,” JP Pollak, the co-founder of The Commons Project, one of the organizations involved with the VCI consortium told the Boston Globe. “We’ve got most of the big pharmacy chains, all of the key health systems. Several states have agreed to adopt this particular standard.”

This technology is not currently being used in Massachusetts, though, as the state’s Department of Public Health has not yet announced if it will supply residents a way to prove vaccination status beyond paper cards. However, those who were vaccinated at CVS, Walgreens or Walmart may be able to use the SMART Health Card as these companies are participating.

Other states, like New York, California and Louisiana have already begun implementing the SMART system. More participating states are yet to be announced. Pollak told the Globe he expects SMART Health Cards to be available to about 100 million US residents in about a month.

The SMART system operates by using a QR code that can be accessed through a smartphone or printed out on paper. When the code is pulled up, name, date of birth and vaccination information will appear on the screen. No other medical information is shown. This code is also digitally signed, a measure to ensure that the card was issued legitimately from a verified location to prevent forgery.

Those using the SMART Health Card must also present another ID to verify their identity.

National organizations like United Airlines, Facebook and Google have already announced they plan to require employee’s vaccinations, as well as many local employers.

For example, UMass Memorial announced Wednesday they plan to institute a vaccine mandate for employees this call. The same day Gov. Charlie Baker said that the COVID-19 vaccine will be mandated for staff at long-term care facilities.

Other businesses, like Jacques Cabaret in Boston, are requiring proof of vaccination from guests who wish to remove their masks inside.

SMART Health Card would make enforcing vaccine mandates much easier.

©2021 Advance Local Media LLC. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.
Special Projects
Sponsored Articles