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EU Digital Certificate and Booster Shot

  • 04-12-2021 11:27pm
    Registered Users Posts: 30 Issybelle

    I am travelling to France in two weeks. France now requires over 65’s to have had the booster shot. Anyone know or heard how to add the booster shot to the EU Digital Certificate? I had my shot at the GP and received a card only and not sure if this will be accepted in France. Nothing at all on the official sites for France or Ireland.


  • Posts: 533 ✭✭✭ [Deleted User]

    You cannot add it at this stage. I’m not sure what the situation will be but if you go to a designated pharmacy in France they may be able to help by verifying the documents and issuing a temporary certificate, which is what’s done for US tourists etc

    At present the EU certs are not updated generally. France has jumped ahead.

    I would suggest you make contact with the French embassy and add ask, as they questions nobody else can answer.

  • Registered Users Posts: 30,627 ✭✭✭✭ Lumen

    Is this not just for Jannsen?

    Starting on 15 December, people 65 and older or who were vaccinated with a Janssen vaccine must provide proof of booster vaccination for their COVID certificate to be extended.

    I understand that page is about travel documents, but still.

    @Issybelle wrote

    France now requires over 65’s to have had the booster shot.

    Do you have an official source? (not the mid-November news reports)

  • Registered Users Posts: 30,627 ✭✭✭✭ Lumen

    This article is paywalled but if you're quick you can select all/copy/paste the text out

    Vaccine boosters are now available to all adults in France, from five months after their second dose. But boosters will also be required in order to keep the health pass activated.

    From December 15th, health passes for over 65s will be deactivated seven months after the date of the second injection – meaning that people have two months to get the booster jab after becoming eligible.

    From January 15th, this will be extended to all over 18s, whose health pass will be deactivated seven months after their second dose.


    Vaccinated in the EU/Schengen zone

    France is part of the EU digital vaccine programme, which means those vaccinated in an EU or Schengen zone country can use their own domestic pass or vaccination certificate in France, since all QR codes are compatible. 

    Most EU countries are offering boosters and in general the policy around vaccines is broadly similar around the bloc. But there are some differences and in this case, as long as your own country counts you as ‘fully vaccinated’ you will be accepted as such in France.

    This works the other way around too – for example Switzerland has never used the AstraZeneca vaccine in its own vaccination programme, but people vaccinated with AstraZeneca in France are accepted as ‘fully vaccinated’ in Switzerland, because their French code says they are.

  • Registered Users Posts: 30 Issybelle

    It is not just for the Jansen. In France you will not be considered fully vaccinated if you dont have the Booster. I got the information from the official french government website. I understand that in France they are diligent about checking on trains and in restaurants etc. So am concerned about being caught out even though I do have the booster. Not sure my GP card will be enough. Tomorrow I think I will ring the HSE helpline and see what they think — if they even know. I would cancel my plans to travel but at this late stage too much to lose. If I find out anything new will post here.

  • Registered Users Posts: 758 ✭✭✭ omicron

    Anyone travelling to Austria from 3rd January will have the same issue, they really need to get it sorted as many countries are bringing in booster requirements.

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  • Posts: 533 ✭✭✭ [Deleted User]

    The European Commission needs to clarify it as they have not officially updated the EU Green Pass to accept 3rd dose boosters yet.

    Those certs also we’re always designed to give facts - number of doses and of what, so that different countries could implement their own rules, even with a common cert. Eg. Some accept recovery or recent testing, others don’t - it can be encoded into the QR code.

  • Registered Users Posts: 30 Issybelle

    I contacted the HSE EU Covid Certificate line and they said that at present there are no plans to add additional doses such as the booster to the Certificate. Not sure what the purpose of it is then if some of the countries within the EU will now consider only a full vaccination to include the booster shot. I am just worried I wont have access to the train and busses in France.

  • Posts: 0 ✭✭✭ Leroy Itchy Nail

    It's completely ridiculous that the third jab, or booster, or whatever we are calling it this week, isn't recorded on the COVID cert. By not including the third jab, the certificate is invalid, and does not do what it should do, which is to verify your inoculation history. What are they thinking??

  • Registered Users Posts: 30 Issybelle

    I received a reply to my question from the French Embassy as well as HSE and they pretty much refuse to answer my question. They simply sent me links to travel advice quotes from the french government website. The information is very confusing anyways and We are constantly told to only rely on reliable sources such as government websites. The websites can be quite vague as you know and no one wants to commit. I have no problem with following the guidelines but we need to have clear communication. The EU covid Certificate at this point is just window dressing.

  • Registered Users Posts: 30,627 ✭✭✭✭ Lumen

    @Leroy Itchy Nail wrote

    By not including the third jab, the certificate is invalid

    This is not true. There is no authoritative source stating that the Irish-issued EU-compatible cert will not be accepted, and one non-authoritative source (that I posted above) saying that it will.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 30 Issybelle

    On the French government website it says that after December 15 for over 65’s one is not considered to be fully vaccinated without the booster. To travel around France you will need to show that you are fully vaccinated, which means the booster. I interpret this to mean that if you cant prove you have had a booster shot or dont have a booster shot you are not considered to be fully vaccinated and cannot access events or trains in France. That would render the EU Covid Cert invalid without the booster. Not sure how else to interpret this. It looks like there is a bit of a grace period to get the booster but if Ireland has no plans to include it on the Certificate it doesnt help anyway. I cancelled my travel plans anyway as it is doing my head in.

  • Registered Users Posts: 30,627 ✭✭✭✭ Lumen

    This website?

    Google Translate says

    As of December 15, the rules relating to the " sanitary pass " change only for people 65 years of age and over, and people vaccinated with Janssen.

    From this date, people 65 years of age and over, and people vaccinated with Janssen, must have had their recall, from the time they are eligible (i.e. 6 months after their last injection for the first and 1 months for the latter), and at the end of a period of 4 additional weeks maximum. Beyond this period, their QR code will be deactivated automatically.

    That's their emphasis, not mine. The French government cannot deactivate your Irish QR code. They're talking about the passes issued in France.

    This matches what was posted above from

  • Posts: 533 ✭✭✭ [Deleted User]

    The EU has yet to update the Green Pass but it will probably happen fairly soon.

    As for France, we are significantly in advance of them in terms of rollout of boosters, with more people boosted and an accelerating programme.

    I think they’ve a major issue overcoming anti-vax stuff, which we do not have to deal with, so the public health messaging over there is very much pushier.

    They can’t invalidate your QR code, but they could potentially refuse to accept it for access. All your QR codes contains is the date and type of your vaccine etc. It is not a ‘pass’ in its own right. Individual countries / states and institutions can interpret it how they wish - it just tells them what vaccines you had and when. So bring other evidence of booster if you’re planning to travel for an extended time. You might be able to get a temporary ‘pass sanitaire’ issued from a designated pharmacy for example if this becomes a major problem, although I can’t see that arising as they’re treating EU passes differently from French ones at the moment and I would suspect the EU passes will update shortly.

    The Irish Department of Health has a database, confusingly called Co-Vax (which is nothing to do with the international vaccine charity of the same name) but it contains the details of your vaccinations and the booster date, whether you got it in a MVC, GP or pharmacy, gets uploaded to that and new QR codes can be generated from that in the weeks ahead.

    I think they’re just not giving specifics on how they’ll do this as they’re not fully finalised yet, but it will inevitably happen fairly soon.

    Also btw, the Irish vaccine database was purpose built for this by Salesforce and IBM, and it’s brand new. So it does not generally have any of the IT legacy problems of other HSE systems.

  • Registered Users Posts: 30 Issybelle

    I did receive an email from the French Embassy stating that I cant be denied entry to France with my EU Digital Certificate but potentially may have a problem in restaurants or trains etc. unless I can prove I have had the booster. I have a card from my GP stating that I have had the booster but remains to be seen whether it will be accepted. I can report back with any problems.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,578 ✭✭✭ acequion

    You're in a very unenviable position Issybelle which must be quite stressful. Are you going to travel? Really hope all works out for you if you do.

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,923 ✭✭✭ ambro25

    Weren’t you issued with a new cert and QR code (showing vaxx ‘3/3’) when you were boosted?

    I thought that was standard practice across the EU.

    We’ve been in the same-but-slightly-different boat re. Xmas travel. Booked ages ago to travel to the UK (from Continent via Calais/Eurotunnel) this week, then the French government brought in travel restrictions last Friday, coming into effect Saturday (18/12) under which travellers now need a compelling reason to travel to the UK.

    Could we find any information from Eurotunnel? From embassies (LU & UK) whom Eurotunnel helpdesk advised us to call? From French border force? Could we ****. All just hedged their answers and pointed us back to the French government’s travel rules website. And that’s as of this past weekend still.

    Travel plans now cancelled. I’m not putting the dog through the vet today, setting off at stupid o’clock and driving 400 miles on Wednesday, only for some French border type to then turn us back within sight of the boarding lane. Hate the UK and French governments over their politically-motivated dancing-fudging around the issues, and antivaxxers and anyone else not ‘doing their bit’, in equal measure now. Piece of coal, with sharpened edges, to the lot of them.

  • Registered Users Posts: 4,626 ✭✭✭ mikeecho

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  • Posts: 533 ✭✭✭ [Deleted User]

    Unfortunately, I think it means just not going to France until this is resolved. There’s no point in going if you can’t even eat out, go to any venues, get into most places etc despite actually being triple vaccinated.

    The European Commission website is still stuck in a time warp on this.

    • Booster shots: As of yet, there are no studies expressly addressing the effectiveness of boosters on the transmission of COVID-19 and therefore it is not possible to determine an acceptance period for boosters. However, given the emerging data, it can be expected that protection from booster vaccinations may last longer than that resulting from the primary vaccination series. The Commission will closely monitor newly emerging scientific evidence on this issue. On the basis of such evidence, the Commission may, if needed, propose an appropriate acceptance period also for vaccination certificates issued following a booster.“

    My assumption is the Irish Government can’t do much about it until there’s an EU COVID certificate update. France has gone out on its own on this, and I would also assume, based on their banning of UK tourists, they aren’t in any particular rush to encourage non-essential travel for the next few weeks.

    If the Commission doesn’t move rapidly on this, I would assume you’re looking at travel disruption within the EU again. Ultimately, it’s their responsibility and problem to solve as the COVID pass is basically now broken as it isn’t displaying 3rd doses.

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,727 ✭✭✭ plodder

    Presumably, it's up to each state to reissue the Covid certs for everyone after they receive the booster

    There's something about how the boosters are to be recorded on the cert in this press release from today

  • Posts: 533 ✭✭✭ [Deleted User]

    They’ll just reissue them by email. Can’t be that big a deal.

    The problem was the lack of an updated format.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 4,962 ✭✭✭ Cluedo Monopoly

    Does anyone know when boosters will be added to the covid certs?

  • Posts: 533 ✭✭✭ [Deleted User]

    Nope! It's a total mystery at the moment. The European Commission seems to have yet to finalise the format.