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Washington launches QR codes to verify COVID-19 vaccination

To verify your COVID-19 vaccination, businesses can scan a QR code with a Smart Health reader.

SEATTLE — Washington state launched Tuesday a new way to verify COVID-19 vaccination – QR codes.

Using the online tool WA Verify, the state will generate a digital vaccination record card that includes a QR code that can be scanned to prove if you're fully vaccinated, according to the Washington State Department of Health.

The new tool comes as more businesses require proof of vaccination to enter. King County has required proof of vaccination for indoor dining and events and large outdoor gatherings since October. Washington also started requiring proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test for large gatherings starting Nov. 15.

RELATED: Washington pharmacies prepare for rush of COVID-19 vaccine booster seekers

Here’s how the WA Verify process works:

On the WA Verify website, people input their name, date of birth and an email address or phone number that’s associated with their vaccination record. People must also create a pin that they use to access their digital record.

The state will then match your information to the vaccine records in its immunization database. It will send a link to you via email or text message that can be used to access your digital record, including the QR code. The record shows the same information that your paper vaccine card does – name, date of birth, vaccination dates and vaccine types.

From there, you can either download an image of the code, take a screenshot or load it to the Apple Health app on an iPhone or save it to Google Pay on an Android device.

To use the QR code, it must be scanned by a Smart Health Card reader.

If you get additional doses of the vaccine, you will need to restart the process and get a new QR code. The state recommends waiting three to seven days for your new shot to show up in the system.

To verify vaccination, people can also still show their original vaccine card or a photo of it and access their vaccination records digitally on MyIR Mobile. However, the state warns each business may have its own requirements, so people should check with the establishment before arriving.