The Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) stated on Wednesday that the Philippine government would be issuing COVID-19 "vaccination passports" for those Filipinos that would travel abroad.
"We are going to create vaccine passports for international sea and air travel," says DICT Undersecretary Emmanuel Rey Caintic on a virtual town hall meeting that was organized by the Department of Health (DOH).
On the other hand, Caintic, have not disclosed any details regarding the new travel documents, as the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases is still discussing the matters.
Caintic also didn't clarify whether other countries would recognize these vaccine passports or if the Philippines would require the travelers entering the country these passports as well.
Last January, the DOH stated that other nations, not just the Philippines, would also likely issue vaccine passports, as this could be part of the new standard in border control measures.
"This would be something of a unique identifier for a specific person who will receive the vaccine. This will serve as their certificate that they have been vaccinated," says Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire.
Information stated on vaccine passports could indicate the brand of the vaccine and the dates of when the person was inoculated.
Caintic added that local government officials must affirm that the vaccination details of their constituents are regularly and consistently transmitted to the DICT as the creation of the travel documents is heavily dependent on the data it gives.
"We need data to plan, we need data to manage supply and demand, and we need data of your constituents so we can properly issue vaccine passports in the next few months," Caintic said.
He also said that the government is "contemplating" whether domestic travel will require the same kind of passport.
The DICT is in charge of the Philippines' Vaccine Information Management System (VIMS), which comprises end-to-end executive information, data acquisition, and enabling systems, which also includes help and support at all the stages required.
According to Caintic, included in the VIMS is the target vaccination per city, a master list of vaccinated individuals, a quick count of the number of vaccines available, how many doses per brand, and other ancillary supplies.
Moreover, the European Union (EU) and several countries such as China and Japan are working on distributing their vaccine pass to those inoculated against the COVID-19 that will allow them to travel.