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Institute advocates for digital vaccine passport

Dr Louise Schaper
With all eyes on the government’s rollout of the first COVID-19 vaccines this week, it was timely for the Institute to advocate for movement on the international digital vaccine passport.

We have published a position statement and issued a media release on the need for Australia to be on the front foot in managing returning travellers’ records. The Institute has many Fellows and members who are expert in health data and who are currently making a huge contribution to national and international efforts during the pandemic.

Once international borders re-open, there will be a need to digitally manage records of those vaccinated either in Australia or overseas. For this, the Institute supports work on the international Yellow Card, the medical passport issued by the World Health Organization.

AIDH Fellow and global health informatics leader Grahame Grieve has been assisting WHO by providing advice on the proposed data model. He says many countries have a great need for a valid, secure digital record of vaccination which is recognised by other countries, given the travel patterns of people around the world and the challenges they’re facing in managing outbreaks.

Australia appears well placed to adopt a digital Yellow Card as the technology is in place through the Australian Immunisation Register, a fully digital record of a person’s vaccines.

Digital public health is sure to be on all our agendas in the next few months.

Dr Louise Schaper PhD FAIDH FIAHSI CHIA BSc(OT)Hons
CEO, Australasian Institute of Digital Health

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