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New York Is First State With Vaccination Proof App

Residents can use Excelsior Pass to enter events
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 26, 2021 2:39 PM CDT

(Newser) – New Yorkers can now get an app that will display a code documenting that they can safely enter events. The Excelsior Pass, which also can be carried on a printout, will serve as proof that the bearer recently has tested negative for the coronavirus or has been vaccinated, USA Today reports. The code will be accepted at scores of arts and entertainment venues, including arenas. Gov. Andrew Cuomo has supported development of the app, and the state is making it available free. It's possible that some places will ask to see a photo ID, as well. The venue will scan the customer's QR code, producing a green check or a red X. It's the first such statewide certification program in the nation.

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The system was tested at an NBA game at the Barclays Center and at an NHL game at Madison Square Garden, per Syracuse.com. "The Excelsior Pass will play a critical role in getting information to venues and sites in a secure and streamlined way," Cuomo said earlier this month, "allowing us to fast-track the reopening of these businesses." The system is based on IBM's digital health pass platform and uses blockchain technology, so no one—including IBM—will be able to access the user's health information. Walmart offers something similar to people who received their COVID-19 vaccination at one of its stores, per USA Today. (Read more coronavirus vaccine stories.)

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