Tuesday 05 July 2022

Ministers are working on ‘coronavirus passport’, based on negative test results

Photo: Depositphotos.com

Government specialists have developed an app that shows the carrier has tested negative for coronavirus, which could become the basis for a broader ‘coronavirus passport’, health minister Hugo de Jonge has confirmed, ahead of Monday evening’s press conference.

Such a document would give the holders more freedom so they would be able to attend a festival or concert or to see a film, De Jonge said. ‘Proof of a negative test is something we are definitely introducing,’ he said.

The CoronaCheck app uses QR codes and will be tested at events later this month, news website Nu.nl reported on Monday. That system could then be expanded to include whether someone has been vaccinated or not, the minister said.

However, he said, health experts still have to establish if people who have been vaccinated can still spread the virus.

‘And want we don’t want is compulsory vaccinations, and that also means indirectly,’ De Jonge said. ‘People should not feel forced to prove that they have been vaccinated. It is an ethical dilemma. You don’t want people to feel excluded, particularly because not everyone has been able to have a vaccination at present.’

The minister said he expected such a system could be developed before the summer but whether or not it is introduced is open to question. A ‘vaccination passport’ is considered a key aid to ensuring summer holidays can go ahead, and the EU is already working on its own plans.

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