Changes confidentiality of personal info in forced inclusion vaccine registry, COVID-19 Vaccine Record Card accepted the same as immunization passport

State: NY
Bill Number: A4132/S837
Position: OPPOSE
Action Required: NONE
Status: ENACTED, S837 was signed by Governor Kathy Hochul on 3/24/2023, Chapter 109

Legislation Details:

UPDATE: 3/24/2023 - S837 was enacted. It was signed by Governor Kathy Hochul on 3/24/2023. Chapter 109.

UPDATE: 3/15/2023 - S837 passed the Assembly and was returned to the Senate on 3/15/2023.

UPDATE: 2/15/2023 - A4132 was replaced by substituting S837 on 2/15/2023. 

UPDATE: 1/24/2023 - S837 passed the Senate by a vote of 61 Aye and 2 Nay. It was delivered to the Assembly. 

A4132 was introduced and referred to the Assembly Health Committee on 2/9/2023. It is sponsored by Assemblywoman Amy Paulin

UPDATE: 1/9/2023 - S837 passed the Senate Rules Committee on 1/9/2023 by a vote of 19 Aye and 0 Nay. 

S837 was introduced on 1/6/2023.  It is sponsored by Senator  J. Gustavo Rivera.

These bills change the confidentiality requirements of the New York State Immunization Information System by limiting the release of identifying information to only the CDC and prohibiting the release to other federal agencies. It creates requirements for novel entities defined as "vaccine navigators" and "vaccine passports." A "vaccine navigator" is any person that collects personal information from an individual in order to register them for immunization. An "immunity passport" includes the paper COVID19 vaccine cards provided by CDC to vaccine providers. The bill author of SB 837 cites as one example the intention to keep identifying information from Federal immigration authorities.

The bill changes: 

  • the circumstances under which personal identifying information may be disclosed to the CDC;
  • identify which type of court actions will make personal identifying information collected by a "vaccine navigator" admissible in a court environment;  and 
  • identify what an "immunity passport" is and clarifying it includes the paper COVID19 vaccine cards provided by CDC to vaccine providers.

These bills somewhat restrict data sharing to federal agencies. However, vaccine tracking in New York is done by state government without consent. These bills continue to support the infrastructure of a vaccine tracking database, vaccine passports, and the sharing of health information without consent. New York legislators should prohibit vaccine passports and amend vaccine tracking legislation to require opt-in informed consent before anyone's information is added to the registry. Tracking individuals without consent is wrong regardless of whether it is the state or federal government. - text, status, and history of A4132 - text, status, and history of S837