COVID-19 ‘Vax Pass’ idea getting nixed in Illinois, Pritzker says

COVID-19 ‘Vax Pass’ idea getting nixed in Illinois, Pritzker says

After state and Chicago public health administrators floated the idea of vaccination passports, Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker said it will not happen in the state. Chicago will offer the ‘Vax Pass’ for summer events to encourage COVID-19 immunizations.

It didn’t take long for Illinois to give up the “Vax Pass” idea.

Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker said April 30 that Illinois will not issue vaccination passports, but might issue something like a doctor’s note – upon request.

“What we are looking at is making sure that people have available to them some sort of verification if they want it, only at their own behest,” Pritzker said.

Chicago Public Health Commissioner Dr. Allison Arwady floated a similar idea April 27 as an incentive to get young adults vaccinated in exchange for access to concerts and other summer public events. That idea is moving ahead, she said a few days later.

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot embraced the idea. She said the incentives are aimed at the city’s lagging number of Black residents getting shots.

“So we really need – particularly 18 to 44, where we’re seeing the lowest uptake – we need you to get vaccinated. Do it, of course, for yourself; but for your family, for your grandparents,” Lightfoot said.

Arwady said the city is also looking at “Vax and Relax,” more incentives for vaccinated young adults to receive special treatment through local nail salons as well as barber and beauty shops.

Chicago’s “Vax Pass” will be detailed in the next few weeks and the passes issued in May.

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