Reader question: Does my French health pass automatically update after Covid booster?

Having a booster dose is to become a requirement for adults who want to continue using the French health pass. But some people are having trouble updating their vaccination status on their health pass after receiving a shot.

A French football fan displays her health pass. Some people have reported issues updating their vaccination status.
A French football fan displays her health pass. Some people have reported issues updating their vaccination status. (Photo by GEOFFROY VAN DER HASSELT / AFP)

Question: I live in France and recently got my booster jab. For some reason, the vaccination status on my health pass hasn’t been updated. Why is this? 

When you get your booster shot, it is up to you to update the health pass. The process is not automatic.

You can do this by scanning the QR code on your vaccination certificate from the vaccination site – whether it is a vaccination centre, pharmacy, nurses clinic or elsewhere.

Some vaccination sites no longer hand out these certificates routinely, instead submitting information about your status to Assurance Maladie. If this is the case, you must download the certificate from the Ameli site to receive the QR code, which can then be scanned into the TousAntiCovid app. 

If you ask nicely at the vaccination site, they may be able to give you a certificate without you having to go through Ameli. But this is not guaranteed. 

For those receiving their second anti-Covid shot, you must wait for seven days after vaccination before the health pass is activated.

But if this is your third (i.e. booster) dose, then your vaccination status can be updated immediately using the QR code issued at the test site. 

READ ALSO Can you get a Covid vaccine booster without a French carte vitale?

Because of a computer error, a small minority of people who receive their booster dose may also have to wait seven days before the app recognises this. 

Upcoming health pass changes

From January 15th, health passes will begin to be deactivated for people who are eligible for the booster but have not had it within the 7 month time limit – this will be the case from December 15th for those over the age of 65.

The health pass will be deactivated seven months after the date when you got your second dose, giving you two months between becoming eligible and having the pass deactivated to book your shot.

For the moment, the deactivation of health passes will only concern those vaccinated in France, and not tourists arriving from another country. 

Member comments

  1. “For the moment, the deactivation of health passes will only concern those vaccinated in France, and not tourists arriving from another country.”

    Can I ask your French source for this information?

  2. I received a health pass this past fall as a US citizen planning to travel to France (using the online submission of documents, including my CDC records of my US-administered vaccines). I loaded my pass into the TousAntiCovid app, and it was active/valid until recently. As someone who is 65+, my certificate status was changed to expired in the app as of December 15. Even though I received a booster (i.e., third vaccination) here in the US, there’s no way now to submit documentation of that booster from overseas. We’re planning a trip to France in the spring but not sure whether we’ll be able to reactivate our pass sanitaire prior to arriving in France.

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Will France’s Covid-19 health pass be consigned to the past?

France suspended but did not cancel the Covid pass in March - but the government has suggested it might not return, even with the country in the grip of the virus’s seventh wave

Will France's Covid-19 health pass be consigned to the past?

Cases of Covid-19 in France have risen 57.8 percent in the past week with daily cases topping the 200,000 mark on Tueday.

The virus’s seventh wave has the country in its grip – but it seems the government has no plans to reintroduce vaccine pass measures.

READ ALSO How serious will France’s seventh wave of Covid-19 be?

The vaccine pass –  itself a two-month development of the old health pass which had been required for entry to certain venues such as bars, restaurants and cafes – was suspended on March 14th, as cases of Covid-19 in France fell. But the health emergency law that enforced it was still in effect and allowed it to be reactivated at any time.

That law runs out on July 31st. Now, it seems the pass will not return. Reports in the French press last month claimed that the health ministry was discussing the possibility of re-imposing some form of pass sanitaire, a bill intended to replace the current health emergency laws makes no mention of it. 

The new president of the National Assembly, Yaël Braun-Pivet, confirmed this week that the vaccine pass was not included in the new bill, entitled “health monitoring and security”, which will be submitted to the National Assembly for debate from July 11 and will, if passed, come into law on August 1st – the day after the current law expires.

“[It] is not what is planned in the text of the law that will be submitted to parliament this week,” Braun-Pivet said.

Rather, the bill extends epidemic surveillance and contact case identification systems until March 31st, 2023. 

The second provides for the implementation of border control measures – such as requiring visitors to France to show proof of vaccination or a recent negative test – if a so-called variant of concern were to spread rapidly abroad, as confirmed by new government spokesman Olivier Véran. 

Currently, most health rules in place at the height of the pandemic have been relaxed. Masks are only required in French hospitals, health centres and places that have vulnerable residents such as nursing homes. They are also recommended in crowded spaces where it is impossible to practice social distancing.

READ ALSO French public urged to wear face masks again on public transport