News from Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital and Hospital Foundation
Has anyone else wondered why vaccination cards were inconveniently made slightly bigger than a size that fits in a wallet? People are being asked more and more to prove vaccination status. The Atlantic discusses widespread frustration with the size of the CDC vaccination cards. When reporter Amanda Moll didn’t receive a CDC response, she hypothesized the card was “designed to be a personal record that has ended up being used as an official license.” The fact is, vaccination cards were initially not meant to be evidentiary.
One way to show proof of vaccination is to laminate your card or purchase a vaccination card holder. Many office supply stores are offering one or the other option for about $3 per card.
You can take a picture of your card and keep it on your phone. Or, if you are like me and have hundreds of photos and don’t always want to search for the digital copy, scan your card into your notes app and pin the note so it is easily accessible.
Determine the best way to access a digital version of your vaccination record. Many states, counties, and cities have digital records available through the department of health website or digital state IDs. Another option is Apple’s fall software update will allow users to store vaccination information in its Health app.
With surges across the U.S., global and domestic travel may not only require vaccination, but digital proof of them. Some feel digital health passports (DHPs) which electronically confirm vaccination status should be rolled out, although it will likely be a contentious issue if it becomes mandatory. While DHPs are primarily viewed as a safety component for cross-state or international travel, the technology could have widespread applications such as conferences, events, etc.
If this happens, some significant barriers will need to be addressed. For example, the pace of vaccination and the lingering unknowns about the virus are an issue. The DHP may confirm vaccination, but we still don’t know how long the vaccination is effective or if vaccinated people can transmit the virus to non-vaccinated people.
Security and validation are a concern. QR codes are prone to hacking, which can put sensitive information at risk. In 2020 when airlines started mandating negative COVID-19 tests for international travelers, there were reports of groups selling fake results.
Data privacy is a significant concern. Possible solutions include using protective frameworks for development such as anonymized credentials meaning entities only know the users by pseudonyms.
It is important to make sure a DHP does not exacerbate socioeconomic, racial, or other inequities. Addressing the digital divide will be crucial, such as ensuring that individuals have access to printable or alternative options to obtain their DHP.
And finally, the ability to ensure the DHP can work across different technology platforms is a huge hurdle. Countries currently using DHPs have differing methods of authentication and there is no global set of standards or coordination on an international scale.
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EDITOR’S NOTE: While some clubs have informed The Union of meeting cancellations or reopenings due to COVID-19, we have not heard from them all. Please call ahead to confirm future meeting times and/or cancellations. We…