New “vaccine passports,” which give proof of receipt of the COVID-19 vaccine, will be required in New York to enter events and businesses.
The “Excelsior Pass” will officially launch on April 2nd, The New York Post reported following an announcement from Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D-NY) this past Friday.
“Similar to a mobile airline boarding pass, individuals will be able to either print out their pass or store it on their smartphones using the Excelsior Pass Wallet app,” stated a press release about the new program and the pass itself. “Each Pass will have a secure QR code, which participating businesses and venues can scan using a companion app to verify proof of COVID-19 negative test results or proof of vaccination. An individual’s data is kept secure and confidential at all times.”
In an announcement, Cuomo state that “New Yorkers have proven they can follow public health guidance to beat back COVID, and the innovative Excelsior Pass is another tool in our new toolbox to fight the virus while allowing more sectors of the economy to reopen safely and keeping personal information secure.”
Cuomo went on to add that “The question of ‘public health or the economy’ has always been a false choice — the answer must be both. As more New Yorkers get vaccinated each day and as key public health metrics continue to regularly reach their lowest rates in months, the first-in-the-nation Excelsior Pass heralds the next step in our thoughtful, science-based reopening.”
The new “Excelsior Pass” has already seen some use. Earlier this month on March 2nd when it was announced, it was tested at a New York Rangers game held at Madison Square Garden.
When it was first announced, Cuomo stated, “We’re doing everything we can to vaccinate as many New Yorkers as possible, as quickly as possible, while keeping the infection rate down and re-energizing our economy in a safe, smart way.”
He followed that statement by saying that “As we begin reopening the valves on different sectors of our economy, we are putting guidelines in place to ensure individuals attending events involving larger gatherings have tested negative for COVID or have been vaccinated to avoid an outbreak of the virus. The Excelsior Pass will play a critical role in getting information to venues and sites in a secure and streamlined way, allowing us to fast-track the reopening of these businesses and getting us one step closer to reaching a new normal.”
The entire time, Cuomo stressed that the “Excelsior Pass” would be secure and protect users’ information and privacy.