Vaccination certificate is coming: everything you need to know about the digital document

Formal decisions are still a long way off. But the federal government is planning an ordinance that will soon make everyday life easier for those who have been vaccinated and those who have recovered. The digital vaccination certificate should also play an important role in this. This is actually a “green passport” that

  • document a completed vaccination with a digital certificate,
  • display a currently valid negative Corona test result and
  • can be used as a corona recovery certificate.

But how does the digital ID work and do I absolutely need a smartphone?

Why should a digital vaccination certificate apply?

Dining in a restaurant, going to a concert, going on vacation without quarantine or simply sitting relaxed in the cinema, all of this should be possible in stages for vaccinated and genesis patients. At the very least, concrete plans should be examined and a decision should be made in June at the earliest. The Federal Ministry of Health is therefore already working on a digital passport.

There is still no precise information about the functionality and the process. The EU had, however, given the member state how it should work and how it should be used across Europe. The Commission advocates uniform rules so as not to disadvantage EU citizens and travelers.

The digital vaccination pass (also known as the green ID card) should play a decisive role in Germany as well as in the EU when it comes to returning to normal.

When would the digital document become effective?

There is not yet an exact start date for Germany. The federal government is still keeping a low profile. However, the travel industry in particular is putting a lot of pressure on. According to information from FOCUS Online, the digital vaccination pass will be introduced as part of the “green ID” at the earliest at the beginning of the first summer holidays in Germany. It is also possible that the green ID will then become part of the Corona warning app. The Federal Ministry of Health left a written request unanswered.

However, it is possible that there will initially be a test phase that could start at the end of May or the beginning of June. This would give restaurateurs, cultural centers and companies enough time to prepare technically and personally (e.g. through training) for the planned relaxation for vaccinated and convalescent people.

Every German citizen would receive the digital certificate after their last corona vaccination. According to the current state of scientific knowledge, complete vaccination protection is available within 14 days of the second vaccination. This is at least the case with the vaccines from Biontech, Moderna and Astrazeneca. Two vaccinations are necessary here. In the case of the Johnson & Johnson product, which is now available in Germany, protection is already in place after the first pick and therefore only one vaccination is sufficient.

If there was a corona infection that was detected by a test, no vaccination certificate is issued, but a recovery certificate. If the test result is negative, according to EU law, a test confirmation should be displayed in the digital ID.

More freedom – the digital vaccination certificate should come before the summer vacation

Which data are displayed?

The subject of encryption plays a central role. The Vaccination certificate should, according to the request of the Commission, be secured by a barcode. If it is scanned, only the QR code and signature are checked. The QR code shows where vaccination was carried out, when it was vaccinated and which vaccine was used.

The Certificate of recovery should also show in encrypted form who determined the result, how the positive test result was determined, when the certificate is valid and when it finally expires.

The Test certificate shows the type of test, the date and time of the test and the test number of the test center. “Personal data are not transmitted here because they are not required to verify the digital signature,” says the European Commission’s final report.

Do I need a smartphone for the digital passport?

Many seniors in particular do not have a smartphone. Common devices could break or get lost. It is also questionable what happens when the smartphone runs out of battery and when consumers are about to leave the airport, for example. Therefore, according to the EU requirement, consumers should also receive the digital passport in paper format.

Only a barcode should be printed on it, with which vaccinated persons should either issue a new digital certificate or directly “identify” themselves as vaccinated, tested or recovered.

I have an older smartphone, is that enough?

The EU has asked its member states to set up their digital vaccination certificates in such a way that they work on all common mobile devices without any special technical requirements.

In addition to an app that is installed on the devices and where the vaccination certificate, test certificate or confirmation of recovery would be stored, it does not seem unlikely that these certificates can also be accessed via a homepage. It is also more than likely that Apple, Huawei and Google are already working intensively on implementing the vaccination certificate in the operating system. Therefore, consumers should always make sure to keep their smartphone up to date.

What if I lose the digital document and paper size?

Then exactly what applies to the identity card may apply. The digital passport would then have to be reissued. It is still unclear whether the family doctor or the health department will take over the exhibition directly. Citizens can still identify themselves as “vaccinated” with the yellow vaccination certificate.

  • FOCUS Online advises: Before you go on a trip, you should always take a photo of your ID card, visa and yellow vaccination certificate with your mobile phone and send it to your email. If the documents are stolen or lost, you have at least collected all the necessary data by e-mail in order to issue new papers.

What if i don’t get vaccinated?

The federal government has already radically ruled out compulsory vaccination. Those who do not want to be vaccinated should still be able to participate in social life. This is another reason why there should be no digital vaccination pass, but rather a green ID card, which consists of different components: vaccination pass, test pass and recovery pass.

However, companies, businesses and tour operators can use the house rules and the general terms and conditions to determine how they deal with non-vaccinated or convalescent people in individual cases.

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