Los Angeles Vaccine Recipients Can Add Proof to Their Smartphones

Carolyn Crist

December 29, 2020

Editor's note: Find the latest COVID-19 news and guidance in Medscape's Coronavirus Resource Center.

Los Angeles County residents who receive a COVID-19 vaccine will be offered a digital record that they can add to their Apple Wallet or a Google app, according to Bloomberg News.

The initial goal is to make sure people receive the second dose of their two-shot regimen of either the Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna vaccine. The program, which starts this week through a partnership with the Los Angeles-based startup Healthvana, includes follow-up notifications to remind people about a second appointment.

The digital record could also serve as a way for people to verify that they've been vaccinated, which may be helpful for flights, events and schools, Ramin Bastani, the CEO of Healthvana, told Bloomberg. The company has delivered test results to patients for HIV and sexually transmitted infections for several years and began working with L.A. County officials earlier this year to provide COVID-19 test results.

Vaccine recipients will also receive a paper card that tracks which vaccine they received and when, but public health officials worry that the cards could be lost or forgotten.

"We're really concerned. We really want people to come back for that second dose," Claire Jarashow, director of vaccine preventable disease control at the county's Department of Public Health, told the news outlet.

"We just don't have the capacity to be doing hundreds of medical record requests to find people's first doses and when they need to get their second," she said.

Healthvana is also talking to concert venues, employers, universities and schools about using the platform. Ultimately, numerous companies across the country will likely play a role in providing digital records to vaccine recipients, Bastani told Bloomberg.

"It's not going to be like one credit card you can use across the U.S.," he said. "Sometimes you can pay cash, sometimes you can use your Apple Wallet."

Source

Bloomberg News, "Los Angeles Vaccine Recipients Can Put the Proof in Apple Wallet."

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