The Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) is a national vaccine safety surveillance program co-sponsored by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). VAERS collects and analyzes information from reports of adverse events following immunization. VAERS encourages the reporting of any clinically significant adverse event that occurs after the administration of any vaccine licensed in the United States. You should report clinically significant adverse events even if you are unsure whether a vaccine caused the event.
The National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act (NCVIA) requires health care providers to report:
- Any event listed by the vaccine manufacturer as a contraindication to subsequent doses of the vaccine.
- Any event listed in the Reportable Events Table that occurs within the specified time period after vaccination.
A copy of the Reportable Events Table can be obtained by calling VAERS at 1-800-822-7967 or by downloading online.
Who can report to VAERS?
Anyone can report to VAERS. The majority of VAERS reports are sent in by vaccine manufacturers (42%) and health care providers (30%). The remaining reports are obtained from state immunization programs (12%), vaccine recipients (or their parent/guardians, 7%) and other sources (9%). Vaccine recipients or their parents or guardians are encouraged to seek the help of their health care professional in filling out the VAERS form.
How do I report to VAERS?
You can report by mail, fax or online. You can access the online reporting portal via the link above. If reporting by mail, you can obtain pre-addressed postage paid report forms by calling VAERS at 1-800-822-7967. You may use photocopies of the form to submit reports by mail or fax. You may also download printable copies of the VAERS form as well as other information about the VAERS Program.