As of February 18, the global coronavirus cases stood at 110.2 million, with a death toll of 2.42 million. With public health authorities and governments endeavouring to get ahead of the virus, the urgency is now focused on effective and pervasive vaccine distribution. The magnitude and scale to mobilize a global solution have never been more pressing given the rate of the disease’s spread. For COVID-19 Credentials Initiative (CCI), their likely countermeasure using Verifiable Credentials may just prove to be one solution to help safely reopen the economy by enabling speed of information for effective decisions.
As more countries look to adopt digital COVID-19 vaccine passports, one American tech expert says the certificates should be developed using a “privacy-preserving approach.”
“There’s a lot of us who have deep concerns about issues of equity, issues of, obviously, privacy … if you were to implement the [vaccine passport] system,” said Brian Behlendorf, managing director of blockchain, health care and identity at the Linux Foundation, a non-profit that is working on vaccine passport software.
The news: Researchers in the UK have calculated that its contact tracing app may have prevented around 600,000 cases of covid-19. The announcement is good news for the system—which underwent serious teething problems—and a step forward for exposure notification systems more generally.
So you got the Covid-19 vaccine. Is it a ticket to take a trip wherever you want? Some tourist destinations say yes, as the concept of a “vaccine passport” circulates around the world.
So-called vaccine passports, a person’s proof of vaccination, could enable travel and entry into spaces in the months ahead. The COVID-19 Credentials Initiative (CCI) is hosted by Linux Foundation Public Health (LFPH) and is working with a number of partners to build these solutions and standardize an approach to vaccination credentials.
“Everybody who has traveled internationally to countries that require vaccination against malaria, diphtheria and other things has had yellow cards,” said Brian Behlendorf, executive director of Linux Foundation Public Health, a technology-focused organization helping public health authorities combat Covid-19 around the world. Its focus is helping projects, communities and companies build open-source technology. “Parents with kids in public school have had to prove their kids have been vaccinated. This is not something new.”
“Parents with kids in public school have had to prove their kids have been vaccinated. This is not something new,” said Brian Behlendorf, executive director of Linux Foundation Public Health, an open-source, technology-focused organization helping public health authorities combat Covid-19 around the world.
With the rollout of mass vaccination programmes against coronavirus in a number of countries, many are beginning to contemplate doing everyday things again, from going to the cinema to taking a holiday or attending a concert. However, with cases still high and worries about new variants emerging, businesses and governments are increasingly likely to want proof people have had a jab and therefore pose less of a health risk.
“I think where exposure notification ran into some challenges was more of the piecemeal implementation choices, lack of federal leadership … where each state had to go it alone and so each state had to figure it out independently,” said Jenny Wanger, who leads the exposure notification initiatives for Linux Foundation Public Health, a tech-focused organization helping public health authorities around the world combat Covid-19.
Two groups of technologists said Wednesday they were combining their work to speed up the development of digital vaccine cards, so that people may eventually be able to use a smartphone app to prove they’ve gotten a Covid-19 vaccine.