The state of Hawaii is making moves to create a “vaccine passport” program for people coming into the state as it sees its summer tourism months approaching fast.
This past Friday, the Democratic Governor of Hawaii, David Ige, has officially signed a new emergency proclamation for the COVID-19 pandemic. According to the publication Maui Now, the document continues the halts on evictions which allows tenants to stay in their places of residence even if they do not pay rent. It also allows the extension of the expiration dates for certain permits, state IDs, and driver’s licenses, among other things.
Also, the governor’s document had some other notable items such as the potential start of a program that would create a path to allow people to be exempt from self-quarantining once they arrive in the state as long as they can give proof that “they have completed a vaccine regimen approved by [the Department of Health]” before they leave for their trip to Hawaii. They would require the traveler to upload the verification into the state’s Safe Travels program or provide validation some other way. The document has also made the point that this exception is not currently available, but that more details would soon be provided.
Currently, if a traveler goes to Hawaii, they are required to self-quarantine for at least 10 days or be granted a medical exemption. The exemptions can be granted if they provide a negative COVID-19 test that was administered “within 72 hours from the final leg of departure” or if they get one for other reasons such as if they have already contracted and recovered from the virus and cannot spread the infection to other people.
As reported by the local outlet KHON2, Lt. Governor Josh Green stated that the actual goal is to start a program as part of the vaccine passport initiative for residents who are moving between the islands on the first of May. Green also stated that trans-Pacific vaccinated travelers should be able to use the program by June first.
The plan is that people would use the Safe Travels app that is used to provide negative COVID-19 test results. However, instead of a test result, a person could upload their vaccination card as proof inside the app.
“The essential plan would be to allow for people to upload their card, for us to be able to ask them to put in a couple details like the lot number of their vaccine and the date that they got it,” Green stated. “and then we’d be able to verify it and have people show their card on arrival.”