Now that New York City will require proof of vaccination in order to enjoy indoor dining, indoor fitness, and indoor entertainment venues starting September 16, other major cities, like Los Angeles, are poised to follow suit. As a result, many of the nearly 50% of Americans who are, to date, fully vaccinated are wondering how they can show proof they've received their "Fauci Ouchie." While various states are adopting a variety of vaccination requirements (others are outlawing vaccine mandates), here are some of the protocols you can use to easily show proof you've been fully vaccinated.
If you don't mind carrying your vaccination card around with you, you can always show the physical card as proof you've been vaccinated — every state will accept the card itself as proof you've been jabbed. Most establishments in every state will also allow you to take a picture of your card and show a digital or uploaded version via your phone, though you do run a risk of a business owner deciding that, for them, a picture is not enough.
There are also a variety of state-specific apps and other online services that can allow you to store your vaccination information and provide proof you've received a one- or two-dose vaccine.
In New York, you can use either the Excelsior Pass, which is the state's vaccine passport app, or utilize the newly-launched NYC COVID Safe app. While the Excelsior Pass, which debuted in March 2021, "verifies applications against the city and state vaccination records," as reported by The New York Times, the NYC COVID Safe app is a "camera app that enables users to take a picture of their vaccine card and store it in the app."
In New Jersey, residents can show proof of vaccination via a free app named Docket, which allows users to access their vaccination records via their mobile device. Meanwhile, in Washington state, residents can access their vaccination records via another free app called MyIR Mobile which, in partnership with the state's Health Department, allows users to access not just their COVID-19 vaccination status but their entire vaccination history.
If you're looking to travel to Hawaii, the state has announced the launch of two online vaccination passports that allow travelers to prove they've been vaccinated and, as a result, avoid the state's COVID-19 testing and quarantine mandates. The first Hawaii vaccination passport was available via CLEAR, followed shortly after by the SMART Health Cards from CommonPass — both of which allow users to access their vaccination and Covid-19 testing records digitally. It should be noted, however, that those wishing to travel to Hawaii must also register with the state's Safe Travels portal.
Additional states — California, Colorado, Louisiana, and Utah — also offer digital portals or free, downloadable apps through their state Health Departments, allowing users to access and authenticate their vaccination information, as reported by The Washington Post. Many states are likely to follow with their own versions, as well.
If you accidentally lose your COVID-19 vaccination card, you can request another. Simply contact the health care provider who administered the vaccine (Walgreens, Rite Aid, CVS, your state's health department) and a new card should be sent to you. State health departments will either "email or mail a copy of your vaccination card, although it may take one to two weeks," as reported by USA Today.
Given the rise in COVID-19 cases and the introduction of variants, including the Delta, Delta Plus, and Lambda variants, it's likely that more proof of vaccination mandates and additional COVID-19 restrictions are forthcoming. Thankfully, for those of us who are taking the ongoing coronavirus crisis seriously and doing what we can to curb the spread, there are a number of ways we can prove we're vaccinated and (somewhat) enjoy pandemic life.