Fake Vaccination records leading to possible public health crisis - What's the solution ?

Feasible solution to avoid deadly disease outbreaks by identifying fake vaccination records

While there has been a lot of progress in the field of medicine over the years, we continue to have deadly disease outbreaks in several areas across the world. From measles and hepatitis to yellow fever, all sorts of disease outbreaks have been recorded in recent times. And, even though UNICEF and other organizations are fighting hard against such episodes, they still exist and often affect the most vulnerable people living in remote and underdeveloped areas. A major reason why these organizations haven’t yet been able to counter such outbreaks effectively is that fake vaccination certificates are often created with digital manipulation and presented to the concerned authorities. A recent report from UNICEF identified that 30% of the vaccination certificates in Ukraine turn out to be falsified and forged in one way or another.


Hence even if a significant coverage percentage was recorded on paper, subtracting the forged vaccination certificates leaves a very low figure behind. And, obviously, it’s not just about the numbers. Forged certificates mean that the vaccination need not be sent to the area which really needs it. This leaves behind the risk of future outbreaks when the authorities do not expect them at all and are therefore not equipped to deal with the situation. It also identifies another major issue that the vaccines do not reach the intended areas because they are either stolen along the way to be sold at profit or simply expire due to the negligence of the concerned people and these incidents are covered up by the fake certificates

Well, whatever the case be, it’s nothing new and such cases have been observed in the past as well. Back in 2016, an outbreak of Yellow Fever got hold of entire Angola only because of fake vaccination papers. According to Reuters, it was the worst instance of yellow fever in decades which got escalated further as fake vaccination papers put doctors on the wrong path.


So, what’s the solution then? Is there a way to identify the authenticity of a vaccination certificate? Probably, Yes! In today’s digital world where QR codes have become quite common, they can also be used as a reliable medium to contain critical information in a secure manner and accessing it whenever necessary. Thus they can help with authentication as well. There are service providers, like Qryptal, that offer a robust authentication mechanism by affixing their specially designed QR codes to just about any document that might need to be verified at some point in time. The QR codes are specially designed to keep even the most sensitive information which can then be decrypted and verified with the help of a dedicated smartphone app. This ensures that there is no chance of tampering or forging the documents and their authenticity can be verified with just a simple scan.

Here is a schematic of how a document with a QR code is produced and verified.

Well, that essentially means that if such verification mechanism is applied, the vaccines can be used more effectively in areas which need them and a person’s prior vaccination record can be made readily accessible as well. Surely, that will help with the prevention of deadly outbreaks and more lives can be saved! A good example of the effective use of modern technology for benefit of the common man.

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