Coronavirus in the UK: NHS app to be used as vaccine passport for travel, says Grant Shapps
The NHS Covid-19 app is being worked on to become a health certificate for international travel, says Grant Shapps.
The UK Transport Secretary said the NHS app will be retooled to function as a vaccine passport, or to show a negative Covid test result.
Mr Shapps Sky News: “In terms of vaccine certification, I can confirm we are working on an NHS application, actually it will be the NHS app that is used for people when they book appointments with the NHS and so on, to be able to show you’ve had a vaccine or you’ve had testing.
“I’m working internationally with partners across the world to make sure that system can be internationally recognised, as that’s the way forward.
“Actually, I’m chairing a meeting of the G7 secretaries of state for transport, my equivalents from America and Canada and all the G7 countries, next week on exactly this subject.”
Shapps also said domestic coronavirus statistics “look good” to enable the resumption of foreign holidays next month.
Under current plans, the earliest date when people living in England, Scotland and Wales will be able to holiday abroad is May 17.
Mr Shapps told Sky News: “I have to say that so far the data does continue to look good from a UK perspective, notwithstanding those concerns about where people might be travelling to and making sure we’re protected from the disease being reimported.”
He added he will set out which countries fall into the “green”, “amber” and “red” categories under the new risk-based traffic light system “towards the beginning of May”.
That will determine what testing and quarantine requirements travellers will face when they return from various destinations.
In terms of the categorisation of Spain, the most popular foreign holiday destination for UK tourists, Mr Shapps told Times Radio: “Spain specifically, I’m afraid I just don’t have the answer to that because the Joint Biosecurity Centre will need to come up with their assessment and we can’t do that until a bit nearer the time.
“So we will need to wait and see.”