Australian State to Begin Digital Vaccine Passport Trial

By Rebecca Zhu
Rebecca Zhu
Rebecca Zhu
September 23, 2021 Updated: September 23, 2021

The New South Wales (NSW) government will begin a two-week pilot of its vaccine passport feature in the existing Service NSW check-in app from Oct. 6.

Around 100 to 500 people in regional NSW will be chosen to trial the feature that will allow people to both check-in and show vaccination status simultaneously.

With NSW slated to begin opening up in mid-October for the fully vaccinated, Minister for Customer Service Victor Dominello said it was likely the feature would not be available in time.

“But the reality is, right now, there are other options of showing your vaccination status,” Dominello said on Sept. 22. “So this is just to make it easier for people.”

Dominello said people could access their vaccination certification right now through the Medicare express app or call Service NSW or the Australian Immunisation Register for a hard copy if required.

“What we will be doing is integrating that and providing people with the option of then having it in their Service app to make it really easy when they’re checking into venues across NSW,” he said. “That way, you don’t have to open up several different apps just to get into a venue.”

Users will be asked to give the app consent to access their immunisation records before it is able to display their vaccination status.

The closed pilot will draw participants from industries such as clubs and aged care in regional NSW.

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian announced on Sept.9 that stay-at-home orders would be lifted for the fully vaccinated from the first Monday after the state passes the 70 percent double vaccination target, currently forecasted for Oct. 11.

However, significant levels of public discontent around stay-at-home orders and vaccine mandates have prompted protests across Australia.

NSW protests have been crushed with heavy police presence, while Melbourne construction workers are currently leading an ongoing protest that is heading into its fourth day.

On the second and third day of the Melbourne protest, Victoria Police were seen firing projectiles at unarmed civilians to disperse crowds.

Rebecca Zhu
Rebecca Zhu