Vaccine Passports: John Swinney claims system 'functioning well' despite admitting some people may never get app to work

Paper vaccine passports will always be valid, John Swinney has said after admitting some people will probably never get the troubled app to work.

Monday, 4th October 2021, 3:40 pm

Speaking on Good Morning Scotland on Monday, Mr Swinney said when the app initially launched on Thursday issues arose due to demand on the system but that these eased within a day.

Asked if people are still having problems, he said: “No, the system is functioning well now, and has been since during the day on Friday I would say.

“Over the weekend obviously we’ve seen individual cases emerging where some of the data requirements to verify the identity of individuals – which is necessary for security purposes – have made it difficult for some people… but that’s a very small number of cases that we are aware of.

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"Obviously the telephone helpline is there to assist anybody in resolving issues that they have, and ultimately, they have the fallback of being able to use a QR code.”

He said that between the app’s launch on Thursday, and 4pm on Sunday, over 280,000 QR codes had been downloaded.

The scheme had previously come under fire for being discriminatory as identification in the form of a passport or driver's license is required to access your personal QR code via the app.

Mr Swinney said it is not discriminatory in “any way, shape or form” because the option is available to request a paper copy for anyone who has issues with the app.

Vaccine passport system 'functioning well' says John Swinney despite initial app issues.

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Asked why testing negative is not a requirement for nightclubs and other venues – as it is still possible to transmit the virus while double vaccinated – Mr Swinney said: “The policy intention here is to increase vaccination levels, that is what we’ve set out as the purpose of the exercise.

"If we increase the levels of vaccination amongst the individuals who are active in higher risk venues then we reduce the risk of transmission of the virus.

"That’s the logic behind this and the clinical argument.”

He said that by doing this they ensure that people are as “protected as they possibly can be” while still allowing for venues to remain open in these “challenging times.”

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