Quicker replacement cards as Health Ministry verifying, digitising COVID records

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After more than a year of administering COVID-19 vaccines, the Ministry of Health is now seeking to verify and digitise all of the paper-based vaccination records, a move that could see people getting their replacement cards much quicker.

“Cleaning the data is a very important exercise,” Minister of Health Dr. Frank Anthony said on Thursday during his daily COVID-19 update.

What this ‘cleaning’ refers to is verifying and reconciling the data that has been collected. With the COVID-19 vaccination records, the Health Ministry will be calling individuals to verify that they were indeed vaccinated, and what type of vaccines individuals were vaccinated with.

With mounting concerns of forgery and even revaccination-which remains unapproved locally, Dr. Anthony says this exercise is crucial.

It is also part of the Health Ministry’s thrust to digitise its records.

“While we’re cleaning, we’re also digitising it so if somebody needs a replacement card, it would be much easier to be able to go into this electronic database and know whether a person has been vaccinated or not,” the Health Minister related.

Previously, the News Room had reported how the paper-based system of maintaining COVID-19 vaccination records meant that verifying people’s vaccination status, or providing replacement cards were challenging.

Concerns have also been raised that this paper-based system led to the numerous reported instances of forged cards.

With the new automated process, Dr. Anthony said that any discrepancies will be investigated and people accused of forging cards will be handed over to the police.

The Health Ministry’s COVID-19 Vaccination and Surveillance Unit is currently working on verifying and reconciling its COVID-19 vaccination data, and has been making contact with individuals.

The Surveillance Team is using the numbers: 620-0569 and 624-6177.

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