The Biden administration won’t be providing digital vaccination certificates at the federal level. So it’s up to individuals to create their own.
First comes the extreme jubilation of scoring a coveted COVID-19 vaccination appointment (for those who can get vaccinated). Then, some of the nerves start to settle in about a possible reaction to the doses (we’ve all heard the stories). Next, the inevitable selfies of getting the jabs or of the CDC-issued vaccination certificate (privacy-compromising details omitted, of course). And then, then, all that you have to show for what is hopefully the denouement of this emotional roller coaster of a pandemic is a 3- x 4-inch piece of paper indicating that you have been vaccinated for COVID-19.
That piece of paper is, for many people, pretty much all they will have to prove that they’re largely protected from carrying and spreading the dreaded coronavirus (it’s not technically all they have—more on that later). What if you lose it? What if you need it and don’t have it on hand? What in the heck should we be doing with this piece of veritable pandemic gold?
Whether or not one agrees with the concept, the list of countries, cruise lines, tour operators, and venues that are asking travelers and visitors to provide proof of vaccination is growing. And with each addition, that vaccination certificate gains more currency.
The Biden administration has acknowledged that there’s mounting demand for some form of secure documentation that allows citizens to provide proof of their vaccination status—but it has also said the federal government won’t be the one to provide it.
“Americans, like people around the world, who are vaccinated will want to be able to demonstrate that vaccination in various forms,” Andy Slavitt, the White House senior advisor for COVID-19 response, said during a March 29 COVID-19 update.
The ability to demonstrate vaccination status is “going to hit all parts of…