The deployment of vaccine passport will not be simple and must be carefully done step by step, said Deputy Minister of Health Truong Quoc Cuong at a cabinet press conference on March 31.
Cuong said this issue is being studied and discussed in many countries. The Ministry of Health is coordinating with other agencies to study and will report to the National Steering Committee for Covid-19 Prevention and Control and to the Government about measures to ensure safety and prevention of epidemics for people, while enabling the opening of the economy by resuming international flights and travel.
Deputy Minister of Health Truong Quoc Cuong. Photo: Tran Thuong
"The ministry is working on a plan, first of all, an appropriate quarantine plan for people entering Vietnam who have been fully vaccinated against Covid-19,” Cuong said.
“The Ministry of Health is also preparing scenarios and plans for the use of vaccine passports for the future. These are the options we are discussing very carefully because there must be a balance between benefits and risks,” he added.
“The benefit is opening up the door for economic growth but the risk is that our people can be infected with disease. This is not an easy task and it must be done step by step," the health official stressed.
During the regular government meeting on March 31, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc asked the health, tourism and diplomacy sectors to study and issue a mechanism for vaccine passports in order to promote trade and investment. The health sector was told to submit a plan for this matter as soon as possible.
According to information at the meeting of the National Steering Committee for Covid-19 Prevention on March 19, the "vaccine passport" allows residents to keep track of their own or other members' immunization history, with vaccination certification and QR-Code to verify their vaccination.
Minister of Health Nguyen Thanh Long said that from the perspective of the health sector's approach, the "vaccine passport" is essentially a certificate showing that a person is fully vaccinated against Covid-19, with two doses of vaccine. With this certificate or “passport”, the passport holders are free from quarantine or a Covid-19 test.
Vietnam is working with countries on the acceptance of the "vaccine passport" through the use of a QR-code. This approach is based on two basic data: health insurance card number or identity card/citizenship card. Upon arrival, people only need to provide personal information to be checked on the system.
PM approves additional $53.63 million for COVID-19 vaccine purchase
Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc has signed a decision on the allocation of more expense to purchase COVID-19 vaccines and conduct inoculations.
Under the decision, the PM decided to allocate 1,237 billion VND (around 53.63 million USD) from the central budget’s standby fund in 2021 to supplement the Ministry of Health’s state budget spending estimate to buy COVID-19 vaccines and carry out vaccinations.
PM Phuc assigned the Ministry of Finance and the Ministry of Health to hold responsible for the accuracy of reported contents and data.
The Ministry of Health was asked to purchase COVID-19 vaccines in line with regulations and in a timely, effective, economical, open and transparent manner.
The government leader also requested the Ministry of Health to build and submit to competent agencies for approval an overall plan on COVID-19 prevention and control in 2021, including the detailed plan on the purchase and use of 150 million doses of vaccines./. VNA
Huong Quynh-Thu Hang
The Ministry of Health is cooperating with the Ministry of Information and Communications to develop a “vaccine passport,” said Deputy Minister of Health Do Xuan Tuyen at the launching ceremony for the Vietnam Digital Awards 2021 on March 30.
Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc ordered the health, tourism and diplomacy sectors to soon study and issue a "vaccine passport" mechanism in order to promote trade and investment while addressing the Government’s regular meeting on March 31.