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Vaccination Passports Gain Traction Internationally; Canadian Companies Pave Way for Implementation

Vaccination Passports Gain Traction Internationally; Canadian Companies Pave Way for Implementation

August 17, 2021 - Yolowire

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has been vocal in his reluctance to adopt vaccination passport requirements for Canadians. However, experts believe that the large-scale plans being developed and deployed by the likes of the World Economic Forum and the NY State Governor’s office continue to gain traction across the board, potentially leaving Canada in a game of catch up.

Last week, NY Governor Cuomo announced Excelsior Pass – a company built with IBM in order to facilitate a digital proof of testing results for citizens without exposing sensitive medical data to businesses and venues.

The system pulls the records directly from the state government’s database – which eliminates the threat of forgery almost completely, as stated by NY State spokesperson. The pertaining parties can scan the Excelsior Pass-provided QR code and retrieve testing results and vaccination status directly from the source. The system is built on blockchain technology and adds an additional layer security with data encryption. The app will host no user data.

On the other hand, the World Economic Forum is working on CommonPass – an app where citizens will be able to upload their vaccination and testing status. This enables them to "consent to have that information used to validate their COVID status without revealing any other underlying personal-health information," according to project information hosted on the Commons Project website.

Canadian experts believe these efforts could ultimately twist Canada’s arm and leave it trailing behind its peers in the global landscape when it comes to providing citizens with adequate proof of vaccination.

“Our ministers tell us they’re on it. But how does Canada keep from falling out of the loop on this? That should be the priority,” said Kerry Bowman, a professor of bioethics and global health at the University of Toronto, during a Global News interview on Wednesday.

“This is not something we need to consider for 2024. This is going to be on top of us in no time,” he said.

The introduction of such a requirement would bring the rapid testing sector to the forefront and come with the need for rapid and efficient nationwide deployment – both of large-scale testing and vaccination ID systems. Two standout Canadian companies find themselves ready to tackle both issues: they are ScreenPro Ltd. and Empower Clinics.

Turnkey solutions primed for deployment

ScreenPro Security Ltd. (CSE: SCRN) is a Toronto-based turnkey coronavirus screening solutions provider. Focused specifically on covid-19 testing for the private sector, ScreenPro’s strategic partnerships with labs and providers allows the company to provide full-service testing solutions across the entire Canadian territory. As an addition to their gamut of testing services, SCRN recently acquired GoStop – a privacy-oriented vaccination passport company.

ScreenPro secured a supply line during the pandemic, effectively becoming a full-fledged end-to-end service provider. The company has nursing professionals at the ready, 7 days a week. The acquisition of an immunization passport service makes it one of the most complete solutions providers in the market.

Empower Clinics Inc. (CSE: CBDT) is a medical cannabis clinic owner and operator that shifted its attention to the pandemic. They’re known for developing medical marijuana products for the US and Canadian markets. The company runs health and wellness clinics in Canada and acquired the Kai Medical Laboratory in late 2020.

The acquisition introduced Empower to the coronavirus testing sector - as Kai Medical Laboratory can execute and process a RT-PCR Covid-19 test, an Anti-SARS-CoV-2 immunoassay, an antibody test for Covid-19 and a variety of other toxicology and hormone tests. Their focus is now on meeting the testing requirements of Canadian companies, institutions, and citizens.

Ahead of the curve

Empower’s recent direction turn has it focused on its covid-19 testing solutions – and the results speak for themselves. Just last week, the company secured contracts with two film and television productions. The deal will have CBDT process up to 5,000 tests, and net $750,000 over two months.

Empower jumped to the sector early in the pandemic, recording tests as early as March 2020. Recently disclosed Q1 reports show a 460% YoY growth in patient counts for the month, having served 5,717 in March 2020 vs. 26,317 in March 2021. They have announced they will now foray into U.S. Federal Government RFP bids.

ScreenPro, on the other hand, recently acquired a passport company to their asset portfolio aiming to bolster their suite of turnkey testing solutions. GoStop Inc. offers a digital inoculation passport focused on privacy preservation. When deployed, it will feature an integrated alert system and a downloadable app with authentication certificates.

John McMullen, CEO, said as part of a press release: "This acquisition adds a complete service offering for the company that will generate additional revenue for us as we roll out this technology into our core testing business of both PCR and, more recently, Rapid Antigen Testing. To give our clients the confidence of knowing that everyone at their organization has tested negative for the virus supports the goal of getting Canadians back to work."

SCRN also recently added a Health Canada-approved rapid antigen test kit to its product offering. The addition of this kit, approved on March 19th, provides ScreenPro with a complete suite of testing and screening tools and services for its clients – leaving the company in prime position to expedite Canadians’ return to work and to normal.

In another press communication, McMullen shared that the company is already rolling out these test kits to their Ontario and Vancouver locations. “It has been well documented that Rapid Testing is an excellent solution for ensuring the immediate safety for not only the workplace, but also for schools, camps, retirement homes and communities. Combined with the proposed acquisition of a proprietary mobile passport, we can help provide the opportunity for people to be anywhere they want to be.”

As the world wrestles normality back into everyday life, ease both of testing and of access to vaccination records seem to be staples of most roads to the goal. Both companies have positioned themselves excellently in a unique national landscape – covering what is becoming a borderline essential need and what could soon be the key to the much-anticipated return to normal.

With a wider set of solutions available and promising asset acquisitions, SCRN’s current CA$ 0.09 stock price could be a value play worth exploring.

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