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COVID-19 certificate

From 9 August 2021, events with a higher number of participants than the general requirements can only be organised if they are attended only by people who have tested negative for COVID-19, recovered from it, or been vaccinated against it. To prevent the spread of COVID-19, up to 50 participants indoors and up to 100 participants outdoors are allowed in events and activities that do not require a certificate. There are exceptions. The burden of proving infection safety lies with the individual. The organiser must inform the participants before they enter the building or the territory whether a certificate is required.

Certificate


The COVID certificate enables those who have been vaccinated against COVID-19, who have taken a negative PCR test, or who have recovered from COVID-19 (based on a positive COVID-19 PCR test) to prove the truthfulness of COVID-19 information submitted to the health information system of the health care providers.

In the first half of June, three EU digital COVID certificates valid in Estonia and across the European Union were completed in accordance with common standards and the same data set:

The COVID certificate can be both digital or printed. Vaccination against COVID-19 can also be verified with a yellow vaccination passport or with a outprint of another country's database.

 

Creating a COVID certificate

 

A person wishing to participate in the event must prove their infection safety. This means that each participant in the event must create their own COVID certificate. The creation of the certificate is done at digilugu.ee »

Local authorities and libraries help people print the COVID certificate. Aliens can apply to the Health and Welfare Information Systems Centre to be issued the necessary certificate.

Read more:

 

Using the COVID certificate and verification of infection safety

 

The organiser must ensure that all persons are verified for infection safety. To verify, visit the website kontroll.digilugu.ee.

 

Using the COVID certificate at events


Indoor events and activities with more than 50 participants and outdoor events and activities with more than 100 participants can only be organised if infection safety and verification thereof is ensured. This means that only those who have been vaccinated, recovered from COVID-19, or presented a negative test result can take part in the events and activities. In such cases, there may be up to 6,000 participants indoors and up to 12,000 outdoors.

Young people under the age of 18 do not have to prove their infection safety but all participants, including young people under the age of 18, are included in the limit set for the number of participants.
Participants do not include the employees, contractors, and performers of the organiser of the event or the owner of the place of the event or provision of the service, as well as persons involved in economic services and emergency services.

If more people come to the event than the limit or more than 50 persons indoors or 100 persons outdoors are involved in day-to-day business, the certificates and test results must be verified from the first participant, including employees, performers, etc.

From 9 August, the obligation to prove infection safety rests with the person themselves, the organiser is not obliged to ensure the possibility of rapid antigen testing. Other proof equivalent to a digital certificate (e.g. an immunization passport on paper) may be provided for participation in an activity or event and for visiting a catering establishment.

The limits apply to the following events and activities:
  • public meetings
  • conferences
  • theatre performances
  • concerts
  • cinema screenings
  • sports, training, and competitions
  • youth work and recreational activities
  • hobby education, refresher training, and refresher courses
  • dining in catering establishments

 

The limits also apply to the provision of entertainment services, such as nightclubs, casinos, billiards and children’s playrooms, religious services, museums and exhibitions, as well as public saunas, spas, swimming pools, and water parks.

Exceptions

The restriction on the number of participants does not apply to religious services. The limit also does not apply to the field of hobby education, activities, youth work, in-service training and education of children and young people up to the age of 18, as well as to their sports and coaching. Catering facilities for ferries shall not be separated from the public space of the ferry.

 

Immunisation passport


The yellow immunisation passport is issued at the request of a person by a family doctor or some other medical worker carrying out vaccinations.

If a person already has an immunisation passport and he wishes to prove his vaccination status with it later, he should bring it along to the vaccination. In that case, the person carrying out the vaccination can make a corresponding note in the passport. People who have been vaccinated abroad can also prove their vaccination status with the immunisation passport.

Among other things, the passport contains the disease against which the immunisation was administered, the date of immunisation, immune preparation that was used, the lot number of it, and the number of doses administered, also the name and other data of the immuniser.

 

Storing the COVID certificate


The validity period of the COVID certificate depends on whether it is being used to prove vaccination, a negative test, or recovery from the disease. For example, a certificate of vaccination is valid for one year.

Throughout this period, all you need to do is download the certificate from the digilugu.ee website to your device once, and each time that you need to prove that you are safe from infection, look up the certificate from the downloaded files on your device and present it, together with your ID document, to the organiser of the event or activity at the entrance.

The alternative is to print out the COVID certificate and carry that printout with you. It is also suitable if you carry an Estonian immunisation passport. The certificates are stored in the downloaded files folder on your computer or smart device.

Digital wallet application


A number of mobile apps have also been developed to make the certificate easier to use. To download the digital COVID certificate to a mobile application (app), it is possible to use:


The above applications are not governmental services. Before using any third-party service, please carefully read the terms and conditions of use and data processing for that service.

 

Information posters for organisers

Event organisers can download the posters and use them to notify the participants of the requirement of the COVID certificate.

COVID certificate verification
 

6 easy steps to get a COVID certificate

Proof safety with the COVID certificate

 

Q&A
 

What is the EU digital COVID certificate?

The EU digital COVID test certificate allows people who have been vaccinated against COVID-19 in Estonia, given a negative PCR test or recovered from COVID-19 (based on a positive COVID-19 PCR test) to certify the authenticity of the information entered into the health information system by the health care service provider.

A person can see the relevant information in the Patient Portal (www.digilugu.ee) of the health information system and create a test certificate for herself.

https://www.tehik.ee/el-covid-toendite-loomise-juhend (in Estonian).

As an organiser of an event, what do I need to check before the beginning of the event?

Starting from the first participant, all those over 18 years of age who have recovered from the disease, been vaccinated, or have done either the PCR of antigen rapid test must present a corresponding certificate to the organiser before the start of the event.

The organiser must check the validity of the COVID certificates. If there is a substantiated doubt, the person must be asked to present an identity document.

The organiser may also provide for the possibility of doing a rapid test on the spot in accordance with the instructions of the Health Board, but if they do not, the person wishing to enter with a test result must organise their own testing at a health care service provider or a holder of an activity licence for a general pharmacy.

Can I also participate at an event if I do not have the digital certificate?

Yes, if a person does not have a digital certificate or he does not wish to use it, the infection risk status can also be proven with a test. If the results are negative, the person may participate at the event.

The organiser may provide for the possibility of doing a rapid test on the spot in accordance with the instructions of the Health Board, but if they do not, the person wishing to enter with a test result must organise their own testing at a health care service provider or a holder of an activity licence for general pharmacy services.

What does a child need to do to be able to get into a major event?

For now, people under the age of 18 do not have to prove that they pose no infection risk, i.e. that they are vaccinated, have recovered from CIVUD-19, or have a negative test result. Once the vaccine coverage among people under the age of 18 increases and young people have had the opportunity to receive their second dose of vaccine, the age limit will be reviewed as well.

Is it obligatory to have a digital COVID certificate?

It is not obligatory. The objective of a digital COVID certificate is to offer a solution that would allow people who have been vaccinated against COVID-19 in Estonia, given a negative PCR test, or recovered from COVID-19 (according to a positive COVID-19 PCR test) to confirm the veracity the COVID-19 related information that a health care service provider has inserted to the health information system.

In which languages is the information on the certificate?

The information on the certificate is in three languages -- Estonian, English, and Russian.

What kind of personal identification data does the EU digital COVID vaccination certificate contain?

First and last name, and date of birth.

How can I get a vaccination certificate if I do not have an internet connection and/or a computer and a printer, or a smartphone?

Estonians and foreigners who have an Estonian personal identification code for whom it is not possible to log into the Patient Portal for technical reasons or who cannot create the EU COVID certificates in the Patient Portal, can submit an application for that in all service bureaus of the Social Insurance Board.

In order to create the certificate, the people who turn to the Social Insurance Board must have:

  • an Estonian personal identification code and an identification document
  • the vaccine must have been administered in Estonia

Everyone who wishes to receive a certificate can fill out an application (DOCX) in advance and print it out. An application that has either been filled out in advance or on the spot must be submitted to a suitable service bureau of the Social Insurance Board and an EU COVID certificate will be sent to the person's e-mail address within three working days from that. Even though a vaccination certificate can already be created after one vaccination, in order to participate in different events and activities in Estonia, the course of vaccinations has to be completed. The service is free of charge for everyone. More info from the web page of the Social Insurance Board.

If a person does not have the possibility to print out the certificate or display it from a smartphone, they also have the opportunity, for instance, to turn to the local library. This, however, requires a working ID card and PIN codes. If necessary, a person can also be assisted by the social worker of the local municipality.

If the PIN codes of the ID card are expired or lost, it is possible to apply for a new username and password from the service offices of the Police and Border Guard Board. The service costs 5 Euros.

Where/how can I get the certificate if I do not have an ID card or valid passwords?

If it is not possible for a person to enter the Patient Portal and create the certificate at home for technical reasons or there is no possibility to print out the certificate, the person can turn to the local library, for instance. This does presume the existence of a working ID card and passwords. If necessary, the social worker of the local municipality can also assist the person.

If the obstacle turns out to be the expiration of the ID card passwords or the passwords are lost altogether, it is possible apply for a new username and password from the Police and Border Guard Board. This service costs 5 Euros.

Estonians and foreign nationals with an Estonian personal identification code who cannot create their own EU COVID certificates in the Patient Portal can submit an application for it at all the service bureaus of the Social Insurance Board.

People who are turning to the Social Insurance Board must have an Estonian personal identification code and an identity document in order to create the certificate. All who wish to get the certificate can fill out the application (DOCX) beforehand and print it out. The application must be taken to the suitable service bureau of the Social Insurance Board after which the EU COVID certificate will be sent to the person's e-mail address within three working days. Even though it is possible to create a vaccination certificate after only one dose, in order to participate in different events in Estonia, the course of vaccinations has to be completed. The service is free of charge to all.

More info on the web page of the Social Insurance Board.

Which special needs release a person from an obligation to present a COVID certificate or do a test?

  • If a person cannot get vaccinated due to medical reasons i.e. she has a contraindication to vaccination (e.g. she has anaphylaxis or a strong allergic reaction to some ingredient of the vaccine, has had capillary leak syndrome in the past etc.), it is possible for her to use a certificate of negative test result in order to participate in activities. Contraindication to COVID-19 vaccination is documented by a family doctor or a treating specialist with the international disease classification (RHK-10) code intended for that and that is the basis for free testing at a health care service provider with a referral from a family doctor or the Family Doctor's Advice (1220 or +372 634 6630). If testing is organised in some other way than at a health care service provider, it is a paid service.

  • If a person can get neither vaccinated nor tested due to medical reasons, a family doctor or a treating specialist can issue a certificate based on which she can participate in activities. It has to be taken into account that the certificate is valid nationally, and in other countries the restrictions and requirements in force there should be adhered to. If a person travelling has a very rare (and medically proven) combined contraindication to both testing and vaccination, she has to stay in a 10 day self-isolation after arriving from a risk country. It is very strongly recommended that they also use personal protective equipment, e.g. an FFP2 or FFP3 respirator, when participating in activities.

  • If a person cannot get tested due to medical reasons (e.g. he has a specific facial trauma), it is possible to get vaccinated and participate in activities with a COVID immunisation certificate (either the paper based immunisation passport or a digital certificate).

Why does the certificate have two QR codes?

One code is for reaching the specific checking web site conveniently, and the other is a QR code through which it is possible to check that the data on the certificate is correct and the certificate is authentic.

Who is meant to use the checking web site?

The checking web site is meant for checking the validity of the digital COVID-19 certificate, e.g. when crossing a border. The border crosser herself is also able to check the validity of her certificate if she wishes. Each EU country that takes up the EU digital COVID certificates creates its own checking application or web page, so the user does not have to use our web page for a check during an EU border crossing.

I have been vaccinated against COVID-19/given a negative PCR test/recovered from COVID-19 but do not wish to get the EU digital certificate. How can I forfeit it?

A person can create a COVID certificate for himself at the Patient Portal. If a person does not wish to get a certificate, he does not need to do anything for it and there is no need to forfeit the certificate.

Will my health data be moving around Europe when the digital COVID certificate is being checked?

No, they won't. In order to check the certificates, the European Commission created the necessary infrastructure (EU Gateway) through which the national systems are interfaced. Personal data (including health data) is not being exchanged across borders and these data are not being collected at the EU level. Personal data is contained only on the certificate that is being held by the person himself.

How exactly does the verification of a digital COVID-19 certificate happen?

Each digital COVID-19 certificate contains a digitally signed QR code that contains relevant information on the certificate. A digital signature is created with the signee's cryptographic private key and a trusted institution's (TEHIK - the Health and Welfare Information Systems Centre in Estonia) public key.

Each member state of the EU creates its own solution for checking the certificates, e.g. a web or mobile application through which it is possible to check the authenticity of the certificate in the destination country. When the owner of the certificate presents his certificate in some other member state, it is possible to check its authenticity, integrity and validity with a public key, as this key is being exchanged through a central gateway (EU Gateway) of the EU. In Estonia, the web page kontroll.digilugu.ee has been created for that.

The web page allows to check the authenticity of the certificate and whether it meets the requirements currently in force in Estonia. The person doing the check will be displayed three colours: green (the certificate is valid), orange (the information on the certificate does not meet the vaccination or recovery conditions in force in Estonia), and red (techincal error and/or the certificate is not valid).

I tried scanning the QR code on the certificate myself but it did not work. What do I need to do?

The QR code on the certificate cannot be read with a regular QR code reading application, it requires a QR code reading application that meets the European Union conditions. People who so wish can verify the validity of their certificate with the web application that can be found on the web page kontroll.digilugu.ee. The person doing the check will be displayed three colours: green (the certificate is valid), orange (the information on the certificate does not meet the vaccination or recovery conditions in force in Estonia), and red (techincal error and/or the certificate is not valid).

Will I be able to travel to country X with the EU digital COVID certificate?

The certificate is not a basis for travelling to a foreign country but, depending on the requirements of the destination country, may release the traveller from restrictions that the country has enacted (e.g. self-isolation). The destination country's requirements for entry/determining isolation requirements should always be taken into account when travelling. Additionally, the restrictions that transport companies have set for their transit passengers should be taken into consideration. Information on the conditions for entry into other countries can be found on the Reisi Targalt web page (in Estonian) of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Am I able to enter country X with the digital COVID certificate without staying in isolation?

The certificate does not guarantee release from the self-isolation requirement. Possible restrictions in the destination country must be taken into account when travelling. Information on the conditions for entering other countries can be found on the Reisi Targalt web page (in Estonian) of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

What should I make sure of before travelling?

Before going on a trip you should get to know the requirements of the destination country for entering the country and getting a release from the isolation requirement. Additionally, the restrictions that transport companies set for their transit passengers should be taken into consideration.

It should be kept in mind that even though the immunisation certificate can be created immediately after immunisation with the first dose, one dose of the vaccine (for two-dose vaccines) might not bring about the desired exceptions and releases at the destination country.

Additionally, it should be ascertained what the destination country's rules are for the immunity created by vaccination, i.e. when the destination country considers the course of vaccination is completed or the immunity achieved. For instance, there might be a situation where a certain number of days must have passed from getting the second dose of a two-dose vaccine in order to get a release from self-isolation. It should also be considered that the approach to a negative test result might differ in countries.

Information on the conditions for entering other countries can be found on the Reisi Targalt web page (in Estonian) of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

If I do not have a smart phone where to display my digital certificate, how can I get into the event?

A printout of the certificate, doing a rapid test with a negative result on the spot and also certificates issued abroad are considered equivalent to a digital certificate.

How are the digital EU COVID certificates being checked?

There are two QR codes on each certificate for checking: one (smaller) takes to the web page that has been designated for verification, and the other (larger) QR code allows verifying that the data on the certificate is correct and authentic.

The certificates can be checked with the QR code scanning application on the web page kontroll.digilugu.ee (it is not possible to do this with regular QR code readers).

The solution makes it possible to evaluate the authenticity of the certificate and whether it meets the requirements currently in force in Estonia. Upon scanning, the person doing the check will be displayed three colours: green (the certificate is valid), orange (the information on the certificate does not meet the vaccination or recovery conditions in force in Estonia), and red (techincal error of the certificate, the certificate is not valid).

The checking application shows whether:

  • the course of vaccination has been completed (1/1, 2/2 etc.)
  • at least 14 days have passed since the last vaccination, or at least 7 days if the vaccine used was the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine Comirnaty
  • up to one year has passed since the last vaccination
  • the sample for the PCR test with a negative result has been taken within the past 72 hours
  • the sample for the rapid test with a negative result has been taken within the past 48 hours
  • the sample of the PCR test with a positive result has been taken more than 11 days and no more than 180 days ago

If there is substantiated doubt, th person must be asked to present an identification document.

Detailed instructions for checking the certificate can be found on the web page tehik.ee (in Estonian).

Is recovery from the disease enough or is it also necessary to vaccinate and test for the certificate to be valid?

It is important to understand that these are three different COVID-19 certificates -- immunisation certificate, test certificate and recovery certificate.

  • Recovery certificate is enough to prove one does not pose an infection risk if less than 180 days have passed since receiving a positive test result (PCR test).
  • The recommendation is to vaccinate people who have recovered from COVID-19 with one dose on the sixth month after recovery. After this, the course of vaccination can be considered completed and a vaccination certificate becomes valid after maximum protection is achieved. The time that it takes to achieve maximum protection is different for different vaccines: Pfizer BioNTech Comirnaty 7 days after the second dose, Spikevax (Moderna) 14 days after the second dose, Vaxzevria (AstraZeneca) 15 days after the second dose, and Jannsen (Johnson & Johnson) 14 days after the first dose.
  • If the recovery certificate has expired, the vaccination certificate is not yet valid, or a person is not vaccinated, they can prove their infection risk status with a negative test result.

 

Last updated: 19 August 2021