Vaccination against COVID-19 has started in several countries around the world, and we have already seen some apps that allow users to prove that they have taken the vaccine with only iPhones. Apple is now tightening the rules to ensure that apps that offer proof of vaccination are only submitted by the health authorities.
According to a statement shared with developers on Tuesday, Apple is seeing an increase in the number of apps that generate health passes with vaccination certificates, which may be required to enter buildings. To ensure that people do not falsify such information, the company will require that these apps be sent to the App Store by the health authorities.
With the recent release of COVID-19 vaccines, we have seen an increase in apps that generate health cards that are used to enter buildings and access personal services based on testing and vaccination records. To ensure that these apps handle sensitive data responsibly and provide reliable functionality, they must be submitted by developers working with devices recognized by public health authorities, such as manufacturers of test kits, laboratories or healthcare professionals.
As with other apps related to COVID-19, we also accept apps submitted directly by government agencies, medical institutions and other authorized institutions.
As mentioned by Apple, the company had already demanded that COVID-19-related apps be sent to the App Store by authorities and public health authorities in an attempt to stop misleading information. Apple also rejects apps that use COVID-19 themes for entertainment or gaming.
Last year, Los Angeles County developed a new app in partnership with startup Healthvana that allows residents to add evidence of COVID-19 vaccination to the Apple Wallet app, so it was only a matter of time before other institutions did the same.
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