British Columbia’s Public Health Officer recently announced proof of vaccination requirements in order to access certain non-essential events, services and business.
The proof of vaccination requirements applies to all people in British Columbia who are 12+ years old.
By September 7, 2021, post-secondary students staying in on-campus student housing will be required to be partially vaccinated with at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.
By September 13, 2021, individuals must be partially vaccinated with at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine to access certain events, services and businesses.
By October 24, 2021, individuals must be fully immunized (i.e.: at least seven days after receiving two doses of COVID-19 vaccine) in order to access the same list of events, services, and businesses.
The measures are time limited through to January 31, 2022, but are subject to possible extension.
Events, Services, and Businesses Requiring Proof of Vaccination
The following is a full list of settings where proof of vaccination will be required:
- Indoor ticketed sporting events
- Indoor concerts
- Indoor theatre/dance/symphony events
- Restaurants (indoor and patio dining)
- Night clubs
- Move theatres
- Fitness centres, gyms, and pools (excluding youth recreational sport)
- Businesses offering indoor high-intensity group exercise activities
- Organized indoor events (e.g.: weddings, parties, conferences, meetings, workshops)
- Organized indoor group recreational classes and activities (e.g.: pottery and art classes) (excluding K-12 school and before and after school programs)
- Post-secondary on-campus student housing
B.C. Vaccine Card and How to Provide Proof of Vaccination
The British Columbia government will be providing a secure weblink by September 13 where people will be able to access their B.C. Vaccine Card. Individuals will be able to save a copy of their Vaccine Card on to their phone. A secure paper option will also be available by September 13.
In order to access one’s B.C. Vaccine Card, individuals will need to provide their:
- Date of Birth
- Personal Health Number
Individuals will need to show the designated business, event, or service a copy of their B.C. Vaccine Card as well as valid government ID.
Confirming Immunization Records
To view and confirm your immunization records, please register for the Health Gateway here: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/health/managing-your-health/health-gateway
If the immunization record is incorrect, it will need to be updated by calling 1-833-838-2323
If you obtained one or two doses of COVID-19 vaccine in another province or country, you must:
- Register with the Get Vaccinated provincial registration system here: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/covid-19/vaccine/register#register
- Submit proof of an official immunization record which will be entered into the Provincial Immunization Registry. This take about 2-3 weeks to process.
Visitors from Outside of B.C.
People visiting from outside B.C., whether from other provinces or territories, or internationally, are also required to show proof of vaccination.
Canadian visitors will need to show:
- Official provincial or territorial vaccine record
- Valid government ID from the same province or territory
International visitors will need to show:
- Proof of vaccination they used to enter Canada
Long Term Care Facilities
The Public Health Officer has also implemented vaccination requirements and recommendations for workers and visitors of long term care facilities.
As of September 8, 2021, staff members at long term care facilities must be fully vaccinated. If not fully vaccinated, the staff member must where a medical mask and submit to rapid testing every shift. If the test is positive, the staff member must not return to the facility unless they provide a negative test result or 10 days have passed since the positive test result.
Currently, non-staff workers (e.g.: outside healthcare providers, volunteers, hairdressers, hired companions, entertainers, animal therapy providers, maintenance persons, etc.) will either have to be fully vaccinated in order to be in the facility, or otherwise wear a mask, maintain a two meter distance from others, and not be in close contact with a resident unless necessary to provide care to the resident.
Depending on the type of service the non-staff worker provides and the frequency of close contact they have with residents, the non-staff worker may be required to be fully vaccinated by October 12, 2021, in order to be in the facility. For such workers, there will be no alternative to vaccinating after that date.
Full details on the public health order for long term care workers can be found here: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/assets/gov/health/about-bc-s-health-care-system/office-of-the-provincial-health-officer/covid-19/archived-docs/covid-19-pho-order-vaccination-status-information-aug20.pdf
There is a strong recommendation for visitors to be fully vaccinated before visiting a long-term care or seniors’ assisted living facility.
Fully vaccinated visitors will still be required to wear a mask when moving through the common areas of the facility but will not be required to do so when in direct contact with the person they are visiting. Non-fully vaccinated visitors will be required to wear a mask for the duration of their visit.