COVID-status Certification and Vaccine Passports

Thank you for contacting me about COVID-status certification and vaccine passports.

I appreciate the arguments both for and against the use of COVID-status certification.

The Government has been working with organisations to encourage voluntary use of the NHS COVID Pass. The NHS COVID Pass provides a way for individuals to prove vaccination status, natural immunity from Covid-19 or a negative test result. Over 200 events and venues have already used the NHS COVID Pass as a condition of entry including at Premier League matches, Reading and Leeds Festivals and the BBC Proms.

Taking into account the latest data, mandatory use of the NHS COVID Pass will not be introduced at this point – as the Prime Minister has confirmed. The Government has said that it would introduce mandatory vaccine-only COVID-status certification, as one of a range of Plan B measures, if the data suggests that action is required to prevent unsustainable pressure on the NHS. Unlike last winter when businesses were required to close, this approach could allow businesses to remain fully open while protecting our health service.

Mandatory use of the NHS COVID Pass would also only apply in certain settings, such as nightclubs and other venues where large crowds gather. The Government would seek to provide businesses with at least one week’s notice before imposing mandatory certification and exemptions from the NHS COVID Pass would apply to people who cannot be vaccinated for medical reasons, to those on COVID vaccine trials and to those under the age of 18.

I believe that we should move to a situation where we do not have covid vaccine passports although I accept there may temporarily be a point where the advantages outweigh the disadvantages. However, at present, I am not in favour of them.

I believe there needs to be a balance between allowing life to resume and controlling Covid. The success of the vaccine rollout is assisting with this.

Thank you for taking the time to contact me.