Coalition of health, tech firms launches initiative for digital records of Covid-19 vaccination

18 January 2021 (Last Updated January 18th, 2021 10:50)

A coalition of health and technology companies, such as Microsoft, Mayo Clinic, Oracle, has unveiled the Vaccination Credential Initiative (VCI) to enable individuals vaccinated for Covid-19 to have digital access to their vaccination records.

Coalition of health, tech firms launches initiative for digital records of Covid-19 vaccination
The coalition members are working to provide digital access to vaccination records. Credit: Free-Photos from Pixabay

A coalition of health and technology companies such as Microsoft, Mayo Clinic, Oracle, has unveiled the Vaccination Credential Initiative (VCI) to enable individuals vaccinated for Covid-19 to have digital access to their vaccination records.

The coalition members are working to provide digital access to vaccination records using the open, interoperable SMART Health Cards specification, which is based on W3C Verifiable Credential and HL7 FHIR standards.

The existing vaccination record system does not provide convenient access, control and sharing of verifiable vaccination records.

This initiative aims to help people to get encrypted digital copies of their immunisation records to store in a digital wallet of their preference.

Individuals without smartphones will be able to receive a paper printed with QR codes with W3C verifiable credentials.

The members of the coalition also include CARIN Alliance, Cerner, Change Healthcare, The Commons Project Foundation, Epic, Evernorth, MITRE, Safe Health, and Salesforce.

The Commons Project Foundation CEO Paul Meyer said: “The goal of the Vaccination Credential Initiative is to empower individuals with digital access to their vaccination records so they can use tools like CommonPass to safely return to travel, work, school, and life, while protecting their data privacy.

“Open standards and interoperability are at the heart of VCI’s efforts and we look forward to supporting the World Health Organization and other global stakeholders in implementing and scaling open global standards for health data interoperability.”

Oracle’s Global Business Units executive vice president Mike Sicilia said: “As the world begins to recover from the pandemic, having electronic access to vaccination, testing, and other medical records will be vital to resuming travel and more.

“This process needs to be as easy as online banking. We are committed to working collectively with the technology and medical communities, as well as global governments, to ensure people will have secure access to this information where and when they need it.”