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Digital coronavirus passport app trialled for international flights

Published: (Updated: ) in Australian News by .

A digital coronavirus passport will allow the resumption of long-haul flights around the world, its creators hope.

A digital coronavirus passport will allow the resumption of long-haul flights around the world, its creators hope.

The CommonPass phone app allows for users to show they do not have coronavirus, without revealing private health data.

The app standardises test results so governments can be sure an arrival from overseas has genuinely passed a COVID-19 test recently.

Read more: Follow our live blog for breaking news and updates on COVID-19

The CommonPass phone app will be trialled on a flight route from Heathrow Airport in London.

CommonPass is being tested on United Airlines flights between London and Newark, and Cathay Pacific Flights between Hong Kong and Singapore.

"Our goal is to test and refine a system that would best support the progressive and safe re-opening of travel, through the adoption of a trusted and harmonised global framework," Cathay Pacific Airways' Lavinia Lau said in a statement.

"The CommonPass framework can incorporate specific requirements of individual countries and governments, and can be used to provide more assurance to travellers as well as the population of destination countries."

Users would upload their coronavirus test results onto their phone, with the app generating a barcode to be scanned at the airport.

United Airlines planes at Newark Airport in New Jersey.

CommonPass should streamline the process of entering a country from overseas.

The app was developed by the Commons Project Foundation with the support of the World Economic Forum.

It is hoped the digital passport will bring the countries of the world closer to reopening their borders.

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"Individual national responses will not be sufficient to address this global crisis," the World Economic Forum's Christoph Wolff said.

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"Bans, bubbles and quarantines may provide short term protection, but developed and developing nations alike need a long-term, flexible and risk-based approach like CommonPass."

The trial will be observed by US Customs and the Centres for Disease Control.

Cathay Pacific planes lay idle on the tarmac at Hong Kong Airport.

It is anticipated following the initial trials that CommonPass will be rolled out on other routes in Asia, Africa, North and South America, Europe and the Middle East.

Many other countries have much laxer standards than Australia for allowing people in from overseas.

You can get up-to-date information from the Federal Government's Coronavirus Australia app, available on the App Store, Google Play and the Government's WhatsApp channel.

Beyond Blue's Coronavirus Mental Wellbeing Support Service is a 24/7 service free of charge to all Australians. Visit the site here or call 1800512348.

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Source: 9News

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