ZIMBABWE is on the brink of the first countries in the world to issue out Covid-19 certificates that will be linked to the person’s passport and National Identify Document.
The certificate will also be used when people are entering and exiting the country. It is hoped that this move will help in curbing the use of fake Covid-19 certificates that were being used by some prospective travellers. Global debate has already started over the issue of Covid-19 vaccination certificates being used as “passports”, with international airlines and stakeholders in the travel industry apparently throwing their support behind vaccine introduction of vaccine passports.
The Director of Health Informatics and Data Analytics in the Ministry of Health and Child Care, Dr Simukai Zizhou yesterday announced that the ministry has already completed designing the new vaccination certificate which will come in the form of a card with security features and a Quick Response bar code (QR code) which can be scanned for verification.
He said the ministry has developed the card to also curb the proliferation of fake vaccination certificates which were being produced by unscrupulous individuals. The certificates will start being issued this week.
“This new card will have security features which can then be easily scanned and verified. The ministry has all the records of people that have been vaccinated thus it will be simple for authorities to verify this, further it will be linked to the individual’s passports and identity documents which were captured during the exercise. The card will have a QR code which is now the international best practice in terms of verification of information. Further, this card will close the loophole of the fake certificates that were now in the market,” said Dr Zizhou.
He also urged those who have already taken the second dose to approach the ministry in order to be issued with the new cards.
“This new card will be available as from next (this) week as we are just addressing a few pending issues. However, for those that have already got their second dose and will require to travel to countries that require one to be vaccinated they can come to the ministry where they will then be issued with these new cards,” confirmed Dr Zizhou.
By Eric Knight