Sweden to look into how to issue Covid vaccine pass to more foreign residents

Sweden to look into how to issue Covid vaccine pass to more foreign residents
Thousands of people are currently unable to get Sweden's Covid vaccine pass. Photo: Janerik Henriksson/TT
The Swedish government has ordered the eHealth Agency to look into how to offer the Covid pass to those foreigners and Swedes who are currently unable to get it.

As The Local has reported in a series of articles this summer, thousands of people in Sweden are currently unable to get the EU Digital Covid Certificate (also sometimes known as the vaccine pass, health pass or green pass), despite being legally entitled to it.

The certificate should be handed out by member states and is meant to facilitate travel within the European Union, but today many are excluded because they received their vaccine abroad, or because they do not have a Swedish social security number, a personnummer.

On Thursday the Swedish government announced in a statement on its website that it had ordered the eHealth Agency to “investigate the possibility of a so-called manual procedure for issuing Covid certificates in those cases where normal procedures are not working”.

The government said the eHealth Agency had been told to come up with a plan for how to issue Covid certificates manually and present it to the Health Ministry by October 1st.

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More than three million Covid passes have been downloaded in Sweden since the scheme came into force on July 1st.

A legal expert told The Local on Wednesday that Sweden’s failure – although it is not alone – to issue the certificate to everyone who is eligible for one contravenes EU laws. The Local approached the government for a comment on Wednesday but has yet to receive one.

The eHealth Agency last month told The Local that issuing the Covid pass manually turned out to be more technically complex than expected, and that it is still working on resolving the issue, both for people vaccinated abroad and for those without personnummer.


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