Current vaccine card created to only be used locally

February 4, 2021: A woman poses for the camera after having received the first dose of the Covishield vaccine in the Maldives. (Sun Photo/Fayaz Moosa)

Spokesperson of the President’s Office Mabrook Azeez has stated that the current vaccine card being issued in the Maldives as proof of vaccination was created for it to be used only locally.

Recently, it has come to light that the COVID-19 vaccination card issued in the Maldives has been considered inadmissible in some foreign countries such as the UAE – as the card does not specify the name of the country in which the vaccine is administered at.

However, this card is accepted in Malaysia – a country where a lot of Maldivians live and subsequently is used by many locals as proof of vaccination.

Speaking at a press conference held this afternoon, Spokesperson Mabrook had stated that the present vaccine card had actually been created to be used only locally.

“This is just as a proof of vaccination. We enter the data into the local database and just give the card with a seal affixed,” he had said.

In addition to this, Spokesperson Mabrook stated that vaccine card had not been prepared as one that is internationally accepted – as the requirements and the information which must be there in a vaccine passport had not been decided back then.

“Back then the countries did not have a common understanding on what the policies should be when formulating this – how the vaccine passport should be and what information must be in it,” he had said.

Mabrook also added that as the Health Minister has stated before, the authorities were currently working on introducing an internationally accepted vaccine passport by the end of this month.

He also noted the digital vaccine passport introduced under the name ‘COVID Safe’ is part of such efforts.

“This card was not formulated for long-term use. Just for domestic use at that time. Now that an international framework has been set out regarding vaccine passports – the government is developing a globally accepted platform,” he had said.

The vaccination card currently issued in the Maldives comprises of the receiver’s name, national identity card number, birth date, address, name of the vaccine administered, and the name of the person administering the vaccine – none of which indicates that the card was issued by Maldivian health authorities as proof of vaccination.