Carrying over the corona vaccination: chaos with responsibilities

If you do not have a vaccination certificate, you can have the corona vaccination entered later. But from whom? People from Bremen report an unsuccessful back and forth.

The vaccination pass has become an important document at the latest since the introduction of the easing for corona vaccinated persons. But what if the appointment at the vaccination center is due and the yellow booklet is missing? Actually, the vaccination should be noted in a replacement document and later entered in a new vaccination pass. Just from whom? There are obviously different opinions in Bremen.

Five calls, no result

When Herbert Pechmann wanted to keep his vaccination appointment, he noticed that he no longer had a vaccination certificate. “I am now at an age where you forget a lot,” says the 75-year-old. Nevertheless, he showed up at the vaccination center, where the staff issued him a replacement form. An A4 sheet of paper, he says. “I wasn’t interested in walking around with it.”

When he asked at the vaccination center where he could get a vaccination certificate, he was sent to the family doctor. But the family doctor told him that he could get the vaccination certificate, but was not responsible for the subsequent entry of the vaccination. “The clerk said, ‘We don’t do this, we are not obliged to’. So I called the vaccination center again.” This time this referred him to the health department.

The office is said to have replied that either the vaccination center or the family doctor is responsible for entering the vaccination certificate. Further calls to medical associations would also have been unsuccessful. After Pechmann has ticked off the list of possible contacts, he now has no choice but to wait. “I don’t understand why the vaccination center doesn’t have a box with vaccination certificates for such cases,” he says. Otherwise he is full of praise for the vaccination process in the Hanseatic city: “The procedure is wonderfully solved in Bremen, you can only take your hat off to it.”

Health Department: Replacement document is valid evidence

The spokesman for the Bremen health department, Lukas Fuhrmann, said on request that the replacement ID was just as valid as an entry in the vaccination certificate.

The vaccination certificate from the vaccination center is an official document, so it can be proven everywhere that you have been vaccinated. It is therefore not absolutely necessary that this is transferred to the vaccination card (immediately). You can wait until the situation with the doctors has relaxed again.

Lukas Fuhrmann, spokesperson for the Bremen Senator for Health

Authority: Health Department also responsible

The authority therefore advises to wait with the transfer if possible. According to the Infection Protection Act, this can be done by a doctor – any doctor – as well as by the health department. So the office has a duty. But Fuhrmann adds that the Bremen health department does not have the capacity to do this right now. “Everyone is overloaded.” And for bureaucratic reasons, it is not possible for empty vaccination cards to be available in the vaccination centers.

The issue of vaccination passports cannot be invoiced at the vaccination center, which is why we unfortunately cannot offer this.

Lukas Fuhrmann talks about the rights of fully vaccinated Bremen residents in an interview

Lukas Fuhrmann, spokesperson for the Bremen Senator for Health

KVHB: That is not the doctor’s job

The Association of Statutory Health Insurance Physicians in Bremen (KVHB) is more critical and points to the current workload of the practices. “In the current situation, very few practices see themselves in a position to carry out such transfers in addition to the commitment in the vaccination campaign and normal health care and ask for your patience and understanding.”

The yellow vaccination card is an official travel document. The doctor’s practice is not a second citizens’ office. It is not the doctor’s job to correct or add to such evidence.

Christoph Fox from the Association of Statutory Health Insurance Physicians in Bremen

Christoph Fox, spokesman for the KVHB

The Bremen General Practitioner Association sounds similar. The problem is known, says the first chairman, Hans-Michael Mühlenfeld. And it could get even bigger in the next few weeks. “Our position is: This is an official delegation; we can do that, but we don’t have to if we have other, more significant tasks.” His advice would be to ask the doctor in charge to register it.

I can understand why busy colleagues say: “That’s not my job”.

An interview with Hans-Michael Mühlenfeld.

Hans-Michael Mühlenfeld, first chairman of the Bremen General Practitioner Association

However, it is also the responsibility of the individual to procure the vaccination card in good time, adds Mühlenfeld. General practitioners can get a new vaccination certificate if you’ve lost the old one.

Old vaccination certificate: is it recognized abroad?

Marion Bajer sees part of the guilt as well. “I should have found out more, but why wasn’t I told something earlier?” Asks the 60-year-old. She has not lost her vaccination certificate, but fears that her old, non-international model will cause problems when traveling.

“During the second vaccination, I was informed that my vaccination certificate was not international and that I would probably not be able to travel with it,” she says. At least not under the conditions that are increasingly common for vaccinated people outside of Germany. Bajer has also experienced similar problems as Pechmann: The family doctor issued the vaccination certificate, but she was not responsible for adding the vaccinations, says Bajer. She referred her to the vaccination center, which in turn went to the health department. An entry was also rejected there. The woman from Bremen now recommends that all those willing to vaccinate attend the appointment only with the current, international yellow card.

EU vaccination certificate could soon be a reality

But is it really the case that you get into trouble abroad without an international vaccination card? “The yellow vaccination card is an internationally recognized document. With older vaccination cards, it may well happen that they are not recognized everywhere,” says Fuhrmann. The German airline Lufthansa announced on request that this depends on the requirements of the respective national authorities.

Within Europe, however, the problem should soon be resolved: The EU countries have suitable for a corona vaccination certificate that is supposed to be valid throughout the European Union. In future, the ID card will also be available in digital form – for example via an app. According to the first drafts, the European certificate will be issued in vaccination centers, doctors’ practices and hospitals after vaccination. Doctors and pharmacies may otherwise create it retrospectively if the vaccination certificate and additional ID are available. The decision has yet to be formally confirmed, but major changes are considered unlikely.

How do those who have recovered identify themselves?

It looks different at the moment with those who have recovered. “Proof of a PCR result is required to prove recovery,” says Fuhrmann. This does not necessarily have to be a letter from the health department: the findings from the family doctor or the laboratory are sufficient. It is important, however, that this is a PCR test. The vaccination will then be noted in the vaccination certificate.

However, if you want to travel abroad as a convalescent, it is best to find out about the entry conditions on site beforehand.

The rules for those who have recovered abroad are very different, and we cannot make any statements about this.

Lukas Fuhrmann talks about the rights of fully vaccinated Bremen residents in an interview

Lukas Fuhrmann, spokesperson for the Bremen Senator for Health

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