NZ should have had vaccine certificate 'a long time ago'

Source: 1News

National leader Judith Collins says although proof of vaccination "is a good thing", a vaccine certificate should have been in New Zealand "a long time ago". 

National's leader says a vaccine certificate should have been here "a long time ago".

Her comments come in the wake of the Government's news on Tuesday a vaccine certificate will be available from November. 

"We will be using them, it is one of the best ways summer plans can go ahead uninterrupted," Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said.

The vaccine certificate will be required at large, high-risk events like festivals, but it won't be needed to access essential services.

Collins told Breakast she did not know why the Government was "reinventing the wheel" with its vaccine certificate and remarked the country should be picking up technology already available overseas.

She pointed out the UK had been using a certificate or passport since May and the EU since June. 

"It's the slowness of the response that I think is so infuriating." 

Dr Andrew Chen, a Research Fellow with Koi Tū: The Centre for Informed Futures at the University of Auckland, said he believed New Zealand's vaccination certificate was being designed based on standards being used overseas.

He said New Zealand authorities knew they could not come up with a standard and force the whole world to use it. 

The EU was using a vaccination certificate in the "most widespread way", so it had been stress-tested. 

Echoing comments he made on Q+A in September , Chen said the unvaccinated still needed to be able to access essential services.

He remarked there were two key considerations the Government would need to make as it looked at the legal framework .

These were taking into account people who had been vaccinated overseas and those who are legitimately unable to be vaccinated due to health issues.

Chen felt most Kiwis would suffice with using a printed vaccine certificate. 

ACT leader David Seymour had earlier made similar comments to Collins. 

"What the Government should have done is have the NZ COVID Tracer App upgraded at the beginning of the year.

"It should have allowed for people to store their status, privately, on their device. That information they held would form a key that could be transferred to any new pass, including those overseas."