Alberta announces updated COVID-19 vaccine QR code for travel but website unavailable

Click to play video: 'Federal government unveils standardized COVID-19 vaccine passport for international travel'
Federal government unveils standardized COVID-19 vaccine passport for international travel
WATCH (Oct. 21): The COVID-19 vaccine passport incorporates the QR code provided by provinces and territories. Marianne Dimain reports. – Oct 21, 2021

UPDATE: Late in the afternoon of Nov. 25, 2021, the Alberta government issued a news release saying that the province’s vaccine records website was taken down Wednesday morning after a technical issue on the website resulted in a possible privacy breach. For more information, click here

On Tuesday, the health minister told Albertans planning to travel they would be able to download a new version of their COVID-19 vaccine record QR code the next day. But on Wednesday, updated QR codes were not yet available.

The new QR codes are being offered to Albertans planning to travel domestically and internationally. They will meet the federal travel requirements.

“The federal government now requires that Canadians 12 years and older show proof of vaccination to board domestic and international flights, as well as to get on passenger trains,” Health Minister Jason Copping said Tuesday.

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“I’m pleased to share that Alberta’s QR code vaccine record will be updated tomorrow, Nov. 24, to meet the recommended Canadian standard for domestic and international travel.”

“If you already have your QR code vaccination record and aren’t planning to travel, you don’t need to worry about the updated version,” Copping added. “You can continue to use your already saved or printed vaccine record with the QR code to access local businesses and venues taking part in the restrictions exemption program.

“If you’re planning to go on a trip soon, visit\covidrecords beginning tomorrow to get your new record and make your trip that much easier.”

Click to play video: 'Proof of COVID-19 vaccine QR code mandatory in Alberta starting Monday'
Proof of COVID-19 vaccine QR code mandatory in Alberta starting Monday

On Wednesday, Alberta Health reported there were issues accessing the updated vaccine record and it was “looking into it.”

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The website\covidrecords was shut down temporarily while Alberta Health worked on the issue.

The website appeared to still be “unavailable for the time being” Thursday morning.

“You can continue to use the Alberta vaccine record with a QR code at Alberta businesses and while travelling,” Alberta Health said in a series of messages on Twitter. “Please check the required travel documents with the government of Canada and your destination ahead of any interprovincial or international travel.”

Latest COVID-19 numbers in Alberta

Alberta Health posted an update online on the COVID-19 situation in the province on Wednesday in which the government department said 464 new cases of the disease were identified over the past 24 hours.

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With the new cases, the total number of active coronavirus cases in Alberta now stands at 5,033. The Calgary zone has more active cases of the illness than any other region in the province (1,836), followed by the Edmonton zone (1,132), the North zone (883), the Central zone (760) and the South zone (415). The are seven cases that have not been linked to any particular zone.

Alberta Health said there have now been 3,231 deaths in the province linked to COVID-19 since the pandemic began, increasing the total by four from a day earlier.

The number of people receiving intensive care in hospital for COVID-19 went up slightly on Wednesday to 97. A day earlier, Alberta Health said 94 people were being treated in ICUs. However, the total number of Albertans hospitalized with COVID-19 dropped to 470 on Wednesday, down five from a day earlier.

According to the Alberta government’s website, the most recent positivity rate reported to the province is 4.58 per cent.

According to the government’s website, 88.5 per cent of Albertans aged 12 and older have now received at least one dose of a vaccine while 83.4 per cent have received at least two jabs.

According to a tweet from Copping, 42,860 appointments had been booked in Alberta for the pediatric doses of the COVID-19 vaccine as of 11:30 a.m. Wednesday.

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