‘We hope the queues will reduce’: Tatarstan Multi-Functional Centres started to issue QR codes in a minute

Multi-Functional Centres moved from the State Services website to a new service of the Ministry of Digitalisation, but the traffic isn’t yet falling

‘We hope the queues will reduce’: Tatarstan Multi-Functional Centres started to issue QR codes in a minute
Photo: Rinat Nazmetdinov

Since 16 November, Tatarstan Multi-Functional Centres have switched to a serial issue of QR codes about vaccination on paper. “The code can be printed in a minute instead of the habitual 30 that used to be spent on a person,” claimed Director of the Multi-Functional Centre (MFC) in the Republic of Tatarstan Lenara Muzafarova at a meeting with journalists. The accelerated issue became possible after getting access to a service of the Ministry of Digital Development, Communications and Mass Media, which became an alternative to the overloaded federal portal State Services. At the same time, the issue of QR codes for people with a medical exemption via the MFC isn’t yet discussed, she noted.

At the push of a button

Since we approach 22 November when Tatarstan public transport can be used only after a passenger shows a QR code about vaccination or recovery after the disease, the MFC found a way of accelerating the issue of codes. Now it is enough to show a vaccination certificate. The MFC is starting issuing printed QR codes via a new simplified service of the Ministry of Digital Development, Communications and Mass Media where only data about vaccinated people is accumulated, without medical information. It became an alternative to the federal portal State Services, which periodically goes down because of simultaneous requests made across the country.

Only MFC specialists got access to the new simplified service.

“Now Tatarstan residents have another way of getting the Data Matrix code. And in this case, it is not necessary to sign up on the State Services website and confirm their account,” Lenara Muzafarova said.

Earlier, the QR code issue process was complicated by the necessity of signing up and confirming the account on the State Services. A lot of citizens haven’t learnt how to use the resource.

According to the speaker, the new service creates paper versions of certificates, and it just takes a push of a button to print them.

The new service issuing paper QR codes is first of all designed for the elderly who have push-button phones and don’t have the Internet all the time, thinks the head of the centre. To get a certificate on paper, they don’t have to come in person, their relatives can do this with power of attorney. Moreover, there are important simplifications here too. So it is not necessary to obtain an attested power of attorney, the elderly can write it by hand. Students can do the same, instead of going there as a crowd, the class monitor should rather be given the power of attorney, Muzafarova recommended. Moreover, there are still queues.

“We hope the queues will somehow reduce,” Lenara Muzafarova cautiously noted fearing possible failures after other regions are connected to the service.

“We hope the queues will somehow reduce,” Lenara Muzafarova cautiously noted. Photo: Luiza Ignatyeva

Bypassing State Services portal

The new service of the Ministry of Digital Development, Communications and Mass Media allows bypassing the federal portal to get a QR code and simplifies the operation of the MFC. Lenara Muzafarova says that now they can focus only on issuing a vaccination certificate. In this case, it will take an employee a minute to download and print the certificate from the new service — from 10 to 60 minutes had to be spent on this earlier. Now 30 people can be serviced per hour at the MFC.

“The Ministry of Digital Development, Communications and Mass Media created this service quickly, it is great,” the head of the MFC was happy. “The creation of a personal account took time anyway, slowed down the whole system of the State Services. Now it is made in a way that the portal isn’t involved. Initially, it was designed to provide other important services. Now they have taken a back seat. Problems with issuing documents in other state services began. A similar situation happened to ‘Putin’s children payouts.’ I think the same is happening to this service now.”

If earlier 1,500 people used to come to get certificates, now 7-8,500 people do a day. Photo: Luiza Ignatyeva

MFC switched to usual working regime

With a large-scale transition to QR codes, MFCs have been operating with a huge workload since 11 November. If earlier 1,500 people used to come to get certificates, now 7-8,500 people do a day. In the last month, about 246,000 people have turned to Tatarstan MFCs to confirm their accounts. With the appearance of the new system, MFCs will return to the usual working regime.

“From 11 October, the centres operated in a special regime, including at weekends. But the statistics show that 98% of the visitors come during business hours, while there aren’t almost people after 6 p.m. It was made a decision to return to the usual working mode on 16 November,” says the director of the MFC in Tatarstan.

In conclusion, Lenara Muzafarova denied information that QR codes would appear for people with a medical exemption on 16 November. According to her, such a method isn’t discussed nowadays. But there is an order of the Russian Ministry of Health Care that such a possibility will appear from 1 February 2022.

“As I understand, the service will be improved, but it is unknown if these certificates will be issued. It is necessary to go to the health establishment itself to get this certificate until 1 February,” she says.

Luiza Ignatyeva
Tatarstan