By Steve Hubrecht
Earlier this week the B.C. government rolled out its vaccine card program.
The move officially came into effect on Monday, Sept. 13 and made this province the second in Canada to launch a ‘vaccine passport’ after Quebec, which began its program on Sept. 1.
The cards are needed for anybody wanting to participate in or attend the following non-essential activities and places: indoor ticketed sports events, indoor concerts, indoor theatre, dance and symphonies, indoor or patio dinning at restaurants, night clubs, casinos, movie theatres, fitness centres and gyms (or any business offering high-intensity group exercise), organized indoor events (such as weddings, parties, conferences and workshops) with 50 or more people, student housing on college and university campuses, and discretionary organized indoor recreation classes and activities.
For the time being, having one dose is enough to get a card, but starting Oct. 24 people will need to have been double vaccinated for a minimum of one week to get a card.
Those wanting to get the card online can do so through the B.C. government’s dedicated website. Personal data that needs to be entered includes your personal health number, your date of birth, and your dates of vaccination for each does. The card can then be downloaded to your smartphone. B.C. residents without smartphones can simply print off their card and show this hard copy. Those without access to computers or printers of any kind can call 1-833-838-2323 and have a printed card physically mailed.
The vaccine card contains a QR code, which functions as proof of a person’s vaccination.
Although the vaccine card program began on Sept. 13, the provincial government had said there will be a transition period up to and including Saturday, Sept. 26, during which time paper records from vaccine clinics will be accepted as proof of vaccination. Starting Sunday, Sept. 27, only official vaccine cards will be accepted as proof of vaccination.
The vaccine card website can be found at www.healthgateway.gov.bc.ca/vaccinecard.