South Scotland MSP Colin Smyth has demanded the Scottish Government resolve cross border vaccine certification issues before any moves to roll out so-called vaccine passports to events and nightclubs.

The local MSP raised the issue with the First Minister in the Scottish Parliament yesterday (14 September) during Nicola Sturgeon’s COVID-19 update to MSPs.

People in Scotland will need proof they have been fully vaccinated before they can enter nightclubs and many large events from 1 October.

The vaccine passport plan was formally approved by the Scottish Parliament last week, despite opposition from Labour and other parties.

Colin Smyth has been contacted by several constituents who live in Scotland but work for the NHS in England, who have been vaccinated through their work south of the border, but are unable to get a vaccine passport because their home address, and GP surgery, is in Scotland.

Questioning the First Minister on the issue Colin Smyth said: “The First Minister knows that every day thousands of my constituents travel just a few miles to Cumbria and Northumberland for work – many for the NHS – so naturally they were vaccinated by their employer in England.

“They can’t get a vaccine certificate from NHS England because they are registered with a GP in Scotland. They can’t get a vaccine certificate from NHS Scotland because there is no record of their vaccination.

“I’m dealing with cases already where the NHS staff can’t get a well-earned break because they can’t get a vaccine certification.

“The First Minister says action is taking place at the moment to resolve this – so can she give a categoric assurance that if this is rolled out at events and nightclubs in two weeks time, none of my constituents will be denied getting a vaccine certificate simply because they were vaccinated in England?”

Commenting after the exchange in Parliament, Colin Smyth added: “The Scottish Government need to get their act together and sort this cross border chaos.

“We are just two weeks away from the roll out of vaccine passports to nightclubs and events. If the Government is determined to go ahead with this ill-thought plan then then I will continue to demand action until they ensure that none of my constituents lose out just because they happened to have been vaccinated south of the border.”

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