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EXPLAINED: Who can actually get a Swedish Covid vaccine pass?

The Swedish vaccine pass, required for large indoor events from December 1st, is not yet available to everyone. Photo: Henrik Montgomery / TT
From December 1st, vaccine passes are required for indoor events with over 100 attendees. But what happens if you can't access your vaccine pass because you don't have a personnummer or you were vaccinated abroad? Here's what we know so far, and what we're trying to find out.

The Local has previously reported the issues our readers have faced when trying to access their Covid pass, despite being vaccinated – some readers have even met issues despite having a personnummer. This article is designed to present what we know so far, and what we’re trying to find out for you. It assumes that you’re familiar with the different types of identity number in Sweden, but if not, here’s a guide.

If you have a personnummer (personal number)…

How you access your Covid pass varies slightly depending on a few different factors.

If you have a personnummer, were vaccinated in Sweden, have an approved digital ID (such a BankID) and your address is registered in the Swedish Population Register (folkbokföringsregistret), then you can log in to covidbevis.se with your digital ID and download your Covid pass.

If you have a personnummer but do not have digital ID, but your address is registered in the Swedish Population Register, then you can apply via post to the e-Health Agency using this form.

If you have a personnummer but do not have an address registered in the Swedish Population Register, you can apply via post to the e-Health Agency using this form.

If you received your personnummer after you were vaccinated, then this means that your vaccine was registered under either a samordningsnummer or a reservnummer. See below for how to register your vaccine to your personnummer instead.

The e-Health Agency is warning for risks of “substantial waiting times” for vaccine passes issued to those without digital ID, so make sure to apply in good time if you are applying via post.

If you have a samordningsnummer (coordination number)…

First, check if your vaccine was registered to your samordningsnummer or to a reservnummer. Some vaccines were registered to a reservnummer despite the person who received the vaccine having a samordningsnummer. If you’re not sure, you can ask your vaccine provider which number they used when they registered your vaccine.

The Swedish Public Health Agency sent a request in September to regions stating that vaccines registered under a reservnummer should be reregistered under a samordningsnummer, if possible, but you may need to send a request to your region if your vaccination record has not yet been altered. Note that this only applies to people who already had a samordningsnummer – regions are unable to issue a samordningsnummer for vaccination purposes.

If your vaccine was registered to a samordningsnummer, you can apply via post using this form.

If you have a reservnummer (reserve number)…

Unfortunately, there is currently no system for generating a Covid pass for vaccines registered to a reservnummer.

This is due to the fact that reservnummer are generated differently in each region, so there is no way to match them up with individuals in the National Vaccine Register, and there can be multiple people registered under the same reservnummer.

The Covid pass system relies on entries in the National Vaccine Register to generate a Covid pass, so an entirely new system needs to be designed to accommodate entries registered under a reservnummer. The e-Health Agency is currently working on a solution which the government has said should be ready by the end of the year, but as of November 18th, a spokesperson could not give The Local an exact date for when this would be ready.

If you got a personnummer after you were vaccinated and want to register your vaccines under your new personnummer

You should be able to contact your vaccine distributor and ask them to register your vaccines under your new personnummer, which should then update your Covid pass, but we have heard reports from some readers that this does not always work in practice.

One of our readers recently got in touch to tell us about his difficulties getting a Covid pass after his vaccine doses were registered to a reservnummer despite him having a samordningsnummer. He managed to get his vaccine distributor to re-register them under his personnummer, but faced delays in accessing his Covid pass, with only one dose registered under the wrong date for a number of weeks.

His issue was finally resolved after contacting his vaccine distributor and the e-Health Agency multiple times, so you may need to be persistent.

The e-Health Agency recommends that you contact its customer service at covidbevis@ehalsomyndigheten.se in the case of errors in vaccine reporting. However, as the vaccines are administered by one agency, the vaccine register is managed by a second agency and the Covid pass is managed by a third agency, the e-Health Agency is not always able to help.

If you got one dose abroad and one in Sweden…

You might be able to register your second dose in Sweden as “dose 2 of 2”, meaning you will be able to prove double-vaccination status, but this depends on your region. You will need to be able to provide documentation of your first dose abroad to your vaccination provider, so make sure you take this along to your appointment.

There is currently no advice available for those who live in regions where this is not possible.

If you got both doses abroad and want to register them in Sweden…

As we have previously reported, this is not currently possible, as foreign vaccines registered abroad cannot be registered in the National Vaccine Register, meaning the Covid pass system cannot generate passes for these vaccines.

To fix this issue, a new manual system for registering foreign vaccines has to be developed.

In October 2021, the government tasked the e-Health Agency with developing a manual routine for issuing vaccine passes to those vaccinated abroad, but the e-Health Agency was unable to provide a deadline for when this will be ready when The Local contacted the agency on November 17th.

If you want your vaccine pass for travel purposes…

For those who were vaccinated in another EU country, the e-Health Agency recommends contacting the country of vaccination about getting a vaccine certificate there, which will be valid for EU travel.

For those who were vaccinated in a so-called third country, there is currently no way to register your vaccines in Sweden. The EU recommends that member states recognise vaccines carried out abroad if they are EU-approved vaccines, but this is not currently the case for all foreign-issued vaccines in Sweden.

In practice, if you are fully vaccinated in an EU country or an “approved country” – a third country where vaccine certificates have been approved for travel to Sweden – your vaccine certificate will be valid for travel.

READ MORE: Sweden’s travel ban: The difference between exempt and approved countries

Residents of third countries who are exempt from the travel ban but not included on the list of approved vaccine certificates – referred to as “exempt countries” – must have an EU-issued vaccine certificate if travelling directly to Sweden from their home country, but if they are travelling to Sweden via another EU country then their third-country vaccination certificate is valid for travel to Sweden.

See the police website for an updated list of exempt countries and approved countries (close to the bottom of the page under “exempted countries and approved countries”).

The travel ban is currently due to expire on January 31st 2022, so the situation may change after this date.

If you want your vaccine pass to access events…

The Public Health Agency and the e-Health Agency have confirmed to The Local that EU-issued Covid certificates as well as certificates from countries with certificates compatible with the EU’s system will also be valid for access to events – but only those showing that the holder is fully vaccinated, not those showing proof of negative test or recovery from Covid-19.

Does this mean that I am going to be unable to attend events in Sweden from December 1st if I can’t get a vaccine pass?

At the moment, it seems as if this may be the case. The government has previously said that the goal is that Covid passes will be available to all “by year-end”, meaning that there is a chance that they will not be available to all by the time vaccine passes become mandatory.

The Local contacted the e-Health Agency on November 18th for confirmation on whether everybody vaccinated in Sweden would definitely be able to access their vaccine pass by the December 1st deadline, and received this response: “The e-Health Agency has been tasked by the government with introducing a manual routine for issuing vaccine passes to people without a personnummer (personal number) or samordningsnummer (coordination number). The government stated in its request that this issue should be solved before the end of the year. The e-Health Agency cannot currently provide an exact deadline for when this will be ready”.

The Local also asked Anders Tegnell, state epidemiologist at the Public Health Agency for confirmation that vaccine passes would be available before December 1st, and were told to contact the e-Health Agency as it is the responsible authority.

Additionally, The Local has contacted health minister Lena Hallengren’s press secretary about this issue, and is yet to receive a response.

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