Provincial government launches COVID-19 BC Vaccine Card

The Province is launching the BC Vaccine Card, a digital or printed document that shows the stage cardholders are at in their COVID-19 vaccine progress.

The BC Vaccine Card will allow vaccinated people to conveniently and securely show their proof of vaccination at higher-risk social and recreational events and settings when new COVID-19 vaccine requirement rules take effect on Sept. 13, 2021. This will help increase vaccinations, while protecting people in these settings, keeping businesses open and allowing events to take place.

“Getting vaccinated means we can bring people back together and do more, safely, and with confidence that we’re not putting those who aren’t fully vaccinated at risk,” said Premier John Horgan. “We have made the BC Vaccine Card easy for people to get, and easy for businesses to check at a glance. The card is a significant step in getting our economy running on all cylinders, and returning to social events safely with the confidence that those around us are also fully vaccinated.”

People can get their BC Vaccine Card online at gov.bc.ca/vaccinecard. Once verified, a person will be able to save a digital copy to their mobile device or print a hard copy to present along with their government-issued photo identification when entering designated businesses and events.

People without access to a computer and printer can get their card by calling 1 833 838-2323 at the Get Vaccinated call centre and get their printed copy mailed to them. They can have a trusted friend, family member or support person print their card for them. Or they can visit a Service BC Centre to get one.

“The BC Vaccine Card is a show of confidence,” said Adrian Dix, Minister of Health. “It says in our pandemic — when doing the right thing to stop the spread is the mandate we all share in — that we’re doing the right thing by being vaccinated. That we’re making the best choices. That right now, especially with a surge in cases primarily in groups of unvaccinated people, we’re doing exactly what’s required to save lives.”

The BC Vaccine Card will include a secure, individualized QR code and image showing either “vaccinated” or “partially vaccinated.” Businesses can either scan the QR code using a QR reader like a smartphone or tablet or visually verify the person’s proof of vaccination. A mobile QR code reader app will be released in app stores closer to Sept. 13, 2021 for businesses that choose to scan the QR code.

“Getting vaccinated is the proven choice to protect ourselves and the people around us. The requirement for proof of vaccine will make our communities safer and also ensure that events and gatherings are safer for all of us,” said Dr. Bonnie Henry, B.C.’s provincial health officer. “I encourage everyone to get their BC Vaccine Card to protect their community, support their local businesses and each other.”

This new requirement is being implemented through orders from the provincial health officer. As of Sept. 13, 2021, one dose of vaccine will be required for entry to these settings. By Oct. 24, 2021, entry to these settings will require people to be fully vaccinated with two doses of COVID-19 vaccine.

By getting vaccinated prior to Sept. 13, 2021, every British Columbian can continue to access the events and settings that will be outlined in the PHO orders.

To learn more about the vaccine card and how to access yours, visit: gov.bc.ca/vaccinecard

Information for businesses, including step-by-step instructions can be found here: gov.bc.ca/vaccinecard-businesses

Businesses will be able to download the BC Vaccine Card verifier app at the Google and Apple app stores.

How it works
  • Individuals who have received their first or second dose of COVID-19 vaccine in B.C. can access their BC Vaccine Card by visiting gov.bc.ca/vaccinecard
  • To access their proof of vaccination, they will enter their:
    • personal health number
    • date of birth
    • date of vaccination (either Dose 1 or Dose 2)
  • The BC Vaccine Card can be saved to a mobile device or printed and will include a secure individualized QR code.
  • Individuals who can’t access the electronic BC Vaccine Card can ask a friend, family member or support person to print their BC Vaccine Card for them, visit a Service BC office, or call 1 833 838-2323 to receive a copy in the mail.
  • Businesses will be able to download a reader app (BC Vaccine Card verifier app) from the Google and Apple app stores, to securely read the QR code to determine a person’s proof of vaccination. No personal information will be retained in the app.
  • Businesses and event operators will be provided with a suite of communications tools, including posters, a question-and-answer document, and a list of approved proofs of vaccination from other jurisdictions to guide them on how to check a vaccine card.
  • As of Sept. 13, 2021, people in British Columbia will be required to present their BC Vaccine Card showing partial vaccination (Dose 1) to access certain businesses and events.
  • As of Oct.  24, 2021, people in British Columbia will be required to present their BC Vaccine Card showing they are fully vaccinated with two doses of COVID-19 vaccine to access the same list of businesses and events.
  • The use of the BC Vaccine Card will be phased in to allow people extra time to transition to their new cards. From Sept. 13-26, 2021, people will also be able to use the vaccination records they received at B.C. vaccine clinics or pharmacies as valid proof of vaccination. Starting Sept. 27, 2021, only the BC Vaccine Card will be accepted for people vaccinated in B.C.
  • In areas where community transmission is increased significantly or where there are outbreaks, the requirements to be fully vaccinated to access these events and activities may be required earlier at the direction of a local medical health officer.
  • Following is the complete list of settings where proof of vaccination will be required:
    • indoor ticketed sporting events
    • indoor concerts, theatre, dance and symphony events
    • licensed restaurants, and those offering table service (indoor and outdoor dining)
    • pubs, bars and lounges (indoor and outdoor dining)
    • night clubs, casinos, movie theatres
    • fitness centres/gyms/adult sports (indoor)
    • indoor group exercise activities
    • organized indoor events with 50 or more people (e.g., wedding receptions, organized parties, conferences, workshops)
    • discretionary organized indoor group recreational classes and activities
  • Individuals will show proof of vaccination in the settings listed in the PHO orders, alongside one piece of government-issued photo identification for people 19+. People 12 to 18 years do not need to show identification.
  • Proof of vaccination will also be required for people visiting from outside of B.C. using a provincially/territorially recognized official record alongside valid government photo ID.
  • For individuals visiting from outside of Canada, they will be required to show the record of vaccination they use to enter Canada and their passport.
  • Tickets can be issued to individuals, owners/operators of locations and event organizers for violations of the PHO ordersEnforcement is at the discretion of enforcement officers, including police, liquor and cannabis inspectors, gambling investigators and conservation officers.
  • The requirement will be time limited through to Jan. 31, 2022, subject to possible extension.
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By Salt Spring News

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September 7, 2021 3:00 PM