The Swedish Health Ministry pledged before Christmas that a new service for people vaccinated overseas would be rolled out by February “at the latest”, allowing them the chance to convert their passes seven months after the Covid certificate was launched in Sweden.
As of February 1st, it is possible to get your overseas vaccinations added to a Swedish vaccine pass by applying at an in-person visit to a National Government Service Centre in Stockholm, at their locations in either Stockholm City or Liljeholmen (find their addresses here).
The service will be rolled out in Gothenburg, Malmö and Luleå – the only other Swedish cities that offer it – on March 1st.
“The assessment is that demand is highest in these locations. If we see that the need increases, it may be relevant to offer the service at additional service offices and locations,” said the eHealth Agency on its website.
The service is available to people over the age of 16 who have a registered home address in Sweden (i.e. have a Swedish personal number) and a digital mailbox. You need to bring one of these Swedish identity documents and original documents confirming your vaccination, which the Service Centre will verify and forward to the eHealth Agency, which will then issue the vaccine pass to your digital mailbox.
“You must have been vaccinated against Covid-19 with a vaccine that is approved within the EU or with a vaccine that is on the WHO’s list of emergency approved vaccines,” said the eHealth Agency.
The Local contacted the agency to confirm whether people vaccinated with any of the above vaccines, including for example Covishield and CoronaVac, will also be able to attend public events in Sweden, once they have received their new Swedish vaccine pass. A spokesperson told us in an email that the vaccines on the EU and WHO’s list, which includes those vaccines, will indeed be valid for public events.
However, legal experts at the Public Health Agency told us via a press officer that as Swedish rules currently stand, a vaccine certificate is valid only if the person received two doses of Comirnaty, Spikevax, Vaxzevria or Nuvaxovid, or one dose of Janssen, at least two weeks ago.
We were still trying to get clarification on this late on Tuesday afternoon.
Boosters are currently not required to be considered “fully vaccinated” under Swedish rules.
We also asked the eHealth Agency why the service would not open until March 1st in Malmö, Gothenburg and Luleå. The spokesperson said that the government had only instructed the agency on December 22nd to make the service available to residents vaccinated abroad.
“There has been little time to prepare and roll out this service. The eHealth Agency and the National Government Service Centre believe that demand is the greatest in Stockholm and have therefore prioritised opening two service offices in Stockholm,” they told The Local.
Sweden currently requires all adults to show a valid vaccine pass to be allowed to attend indoor public events of more than 50 people, unless they have a medical reason not to get vaccinated. The government and the Public Health Agency have indicated that they may start to ease restrictions from next week onwards, although they haven’t specified which restrictions would in that case be the first to go.
It is only possible for people vaccinated outside the EU to get a Swedish vaccine pass. However, the EU Covid certificate, as well as certificates from more than 30 non-EU countries, are valid as proof of vaccination in Sweden so they don’t need to be converted.
“You must have received the last vaccination dose in a series, in a third country,” said the e-Health Agency about the requirements for receiving a Swedish vaccine pass. “Third countries are countries outside the EU/EEA as well as countries where it has not been possible to obtain a vaccination certificate, even though the country is connected to the EU’s digital Covid certificate system.”
It is not possible for foreign tourists or people who live in Sweden but don’t have a personal number to get a Swedish vaccine pass at this stage. The government has previously said it is looking into expanding the vaccine pass scheme to these groups, too.