Apple will only approve COVID-19 vaccination apps verified by health authorities

Mariella Moon
·Associate Editor
·1-min read

It may not be enough just to get vaccinated against COVID-19 -- you may also need proof that you've completed the vaccination course to be able to travel, to go to school or to enter establishments in the immediate future. That's why apps providing proof of vaccination you can easily take with you have started popping up, and why Apple has conjured up a rule to make sure those apps only offer legitimate information. The tech giant has announced in its developer page (as spotted by 9to5Mac) that apps generating health passes based on vaccine records must be submitted by developers working with companies and entities recognized by public health authorities.

In other words, Apple will only approve apps if they're released by test kit manufacturers, laboratories, healthcare providers or other similar organizations and companies approved by health agencies. Of course, it also welcomes submissions directly from the government, as well as from medical and other credentialed institutions.

Late last year, Los Angeles County's health department teamed with startup Healthvana to develop an app that can store and show vaccination records for its 10 million residents. Not every local government organization around the world has the means to do the same, though, and a lot of people will have to rely on whatever app they can download on their phones. Aside from wanting to make sure that the applications available for download on iOS only offer verified vaccination records, Apple says the move is also meant to ensure that it only approves apps that can responsibly handle sensitive data.