, Hong Kong

Vax pass update to promote inoculation

More premises will be covered in the vaccine pass later this month.

The Hong Kong Government plans to have more premises covered under the vaccine pass arrangement to be launched later this month as a means to encourage COVID-19 vaccination, Chief Executive Carrie Lam said on 4 February.

The vaccine pass policy, which requires that citizens get at least the first dose before entering places like restaurants and gyms, will be discussed at the Executive Council meeting on 8 February.

"The vaccine pass is imposed to encourage and induce vaccination by those who should be vaccinated, especially the elderly, because the current vaccination rate amongst the elderly is still very low. For example, for those aged 70 and above, half of them have yet to be vaccinated, and the number is probably about half a million," Lam told the media. She adds unvaccinated children will not be subject to the vaccine pass because they are ineligible for vaccination for the time being.

Meanwhile, the Social Welfare Department announced that from 14 March, it will extend the vaccine pass arrangement to people newly joining residential care homes for the elderly and residential care homes for people with disabilities for long-term abode. These residents must have received at least the first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine to be admitted unless they get a medical exemption certificate issued by doctors to prove that they are unsuitable to get the jab.

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