Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced on Thursday that the country will start rolling out a standardized COVID-19 vaccination passport that will be required for domestic and international travel.
The new “Canadian COVID-19 proof of vaccination” will be available as a file on a mobile device, computer or mobile wallet. It will also be available on paper, by printing the PDF file with the QR code. Provincial and territorial health departments will be responsible for providing the vaccine passport.
“As Canadians look to start traveling again, there will be a standardized proof of vaccination certificate,” Trudeau said at the news conference, adding that they have “worked very closely with airline operators to ensure that it is as easy and seamless a process as possible.”
The proof of vaccination will include the person’s name, date of birth, and a COVID-19 vaccine history including the type of vaccine received, doses and the dates those doses were administered, CNN noted.
About five provinces and three territories are now offering the nationally standardized vaccine passports and the remaining five provinces are expected to catch up soon, Trudeau said.
“We will be picking up the tab for it at the federal level, to ensure that all provinces are able to do it,” Trudeau told reporters outside the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario in Ottawa.
As mentioned by Trudeau, Canada is one of the leading countries in vaccination rates. Currently, 76% of Canadians have at least one dose of the vaccine while almost 72% are fully vaccinated, government data shows.
Starting on Oct. 30, Canada will require all travelers aged 12 or over to be fully vaccinated or show a recent negative COVID-19 test administered within the past 72 hours. By the end of November, they will no longer be accepting COVID testing as travel eligibility and all travelers will be required to show proof of vaccination, the New York Times noted.
In 2019, Canada received a record 22.1 million international tourists from abroad.