The NHS Covid Pass has been accepted as an equivalent to the European Union Digital Covid Certificate in a bid to make international travel easier for UK citizens.

An agreement between the EU and the UK means travellers can now have their vaccination status digitally verified with each other’s Covid vaccination certificate schemes.

Although most EU countries accept the NHS Covid Pass, only a few were actually able to scan their barcodes. The new agreement, made on the October 29, means that UK citizens can confirm their Covid vaccine status using the EU Digital Covid Certificate (EU DCC) gateway. It also opens up secure and safe access to non-EU countries that are also linked to the EU DCC gateway, including Norway, Switzerland, Israel and Iceland.

Residents of Northern Ireland, Scotland and the Crown Dependencies who have vaccine certificates other than the NHS Covid Pass can also use the gateway.

What is the Covid Pass?

The NHS Covid Pass is one element of the NHS App. It was integrated into the NHS App on May 17 this year and allowed people to prove their vaccination status if needed for international travel or if it was a requirement of attending live events.

Before the Covid Pass was added, the NHS App had around four millions users. The number has now risen to 12 million, with many downloading the App in order to access their Covid Passport. As well as being able to prove their vaccination status, the pass also allows users to check how many doses they’ve received and of which jab.

Matthew Gould, CEO of NHSX, which is leading the NHS Covid Pass Programme, said: The UK was one of the first countries to launch a digital pass solution, and the NHS COVID Pass is already recognised by over 80 countries and territories across the world. This news will add yet more countries to that list, simplifying international travel for Covid Pass users and enabling digital verification across Europe and beyond.”

NHS Covid Pass users can ensure their own Covid passports are up-to-date by refreshing their downloaded digital passes.