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COVID-19 vaccination card on an Apple iPhone
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Tech tips

How to store a digital copy of your vaccination card on your iPhone or Android

If you want to enter certain countries or attend some public events, you’ll need proof that you’ve been vaccinated against COVID-19. If you’ve already received one or more doses, you know how important that little card is. It’s a record of which COVID-19 vaccine you received and the date and place you got it.

While you can get a replacement card if you need one, it’s better to keep your original safe. Lamination is one option, but you can’t update it and will have to get a second card to keep track of additional doses. Thankfully there’s a better solution. Tap or click here to check out our recommendation for protecting your vaccine card.

When you’re out and about, you can keep your vaccine information stored in your phone. Until recently, this involved taking a picture of the card, but now you can keep an official digital version of a COVID vaccination card on a smartphone.

Storing your COVID-19 vaccination card on your iPhone

Apple

As of iOS 15.1, you can store your official COVID-19 vaccination card on your iPhone. These are verifiable records that vaccine providers digitally sign. It’s kept in Apple Wallet and can be presented quickly and easily.

RELATED: Millions of at-home COVID tests recalled – Did you take one?

First, you’ll need a QR code. You can get one from your healthcare or vaccine provider. Here’s what to do once you have it:

  • Open the camera on your iPhone and hold your phone so the QR code appears in the viewfinder.
  • Your phone will recognize the QR code and display a Health app notification.
  • Tap the Health app notification.
  • Tap Add to Wallet & Health.
  • Tap Done.

You may have received a downloadable health record, and you can add this to your iPhone as well:

  • Tap the download link on your iPhone.
  • Tap Add to Wallet & Health.
  • Tap Done.

Once you’ve added your vaccination card to the Wallet app, open it and show the digital card as needed. You can double-click the side button (on an iPhone with Face ID) or double-click the Home button (on other iPhone models) to access the wallet stack and from there select your card.

Storing your COVID-19 vaccination card on your Android phone

Google Developers

You’ll need to be running Android 5 or later, and your phone needs to be Play Protect certified. Once you’re all set, you’ll need to access your vaccine status or certificate online. Reach out to your healthcare provider or the organization that administered the vaccine to get this information.

Once you have a link, you can proceed:

  • From your Android phone, visit the website, app, email or text from your healthcare provider.
  • Find your COVID-19 vaccination or test information.
  • Tap Save to phone. If you’re asked if you want to save with Chrome or Google Pay, choose Google Pay even if you don’t have the Google Pay app.
  • Tap Continue.
  • You may need to set a screen lock, which is a good idea in any case.
  • Read through the consent information, then tap I Agree.
  • You’ll be asked if you want to add an icon to your home screen, which makes it easier to access your digital vaccination card.
  • If you don’t want to add the icon, you can access it through the Google Pay app. Open the app and tap the card image, then swipe up from the bottom of the screen.
  • If you don’t have Google Pay, go to Settings, then tap Google > Settings for Google Apps > Google Pay. Swipe up from the bottom of the screen.

Another solution

Some states work with SMART Health cards. The New York Times reports that these are “digital credentials linked to an official database containing your records of vaccination or test results.” You can get a QR code from here, which you can use to add your vaccine information to your smartphone.

RELATED: What are your chances of getting COVID? New CDC map charts breakthrough cases

For a list of states, pharmacies and health systems that support SMART Health cards, go to commontrustnetwork.org/verifier-list.

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