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Technically Speaking
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August 2015
Technically Speaking
Monthly Column by Deborah Wexler, MD
Deborah Wexler MD
Technically Speaking is a monthly column written by IAC’s Executive Director Deborah Wexler, MD. The column is featured in The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia Vaccine Education Center’s (VEC's) monthly e-newsletter for healthcare professionals. Technically Speaking columns cover practical topics in immunization delivery such as needle length, vaccine administration, cold chain, and immunization schedules.
Check out a recent issue of Vaccine Update for Healthcare Providers. The VEC e-newsletter keeps providers up to date on vaccine-related issues and includes reviews of recently published journal articles, media recaps, announcements about new resources, and a regularly updated calendar of events.
TECHNICALLY SPEAKING
Is Your Practice Following Federal Law When Using Vaccine Information Statements?
Published August 2015
Information presented in this article may have changed since the original publication date. For the most current immunization recommendations from the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices, visit www.immunize.org/acip/acip_vax.asp.
What are Vaccine Information Statements?
Vaccine Information Statements (VISs) are documents produced by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to properly inform all patients (or their parents/legal representatives) about the risks and benefits of each vaccine.
Use of VISs is legally required!
Federal law (under the National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act) requires the provider to give a copy of the current VIS to the adult patient or to the childís parent/legal representative before vaccinating an adult or child with a dose of any vaccine containing diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, measles, mumps, rubella, polio, hepatitis A, hepatitis B, Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib), influenza, pneumococcal conjugate, meningococcal, rotavirus, human papillomavirus (HPV), or varicella (chickenpox).
Additional facts about the use of VISs
Fact:
Federal law requires that VISs must be used for patients of ALL ages (adults as well as children) before administering vaccines.
Fact:
VISs must be given to the patient (or parent/legal representative) BEFORE vaccine is administered so they have an opportunity to read them.
Fact:
VISs must be used regardless of whether the vaccine is given in a public or private healthcare setting.
Fact:
At the time of the visit, you must provide a current VIS for each vaccine you administer. This includes providing a VIS before each dose of vaccines given as a series.
Fact:
You must provide VISs whenever you administer combination vaccines. If you administer a combination vaccine that does not have a stand-alone VIS (e.g., DTaP-IPV; DTaP-IPV-HepB; DTaP-Hib-IPV; HepA-HepB), you should provide the patient with individual VISs for the component vaccines.
Fact:
The Multi-Vaccine VIS may be used in place of the individual VISs for DTaP, Hib, hepatitis B, polio, and pneumococcal when two or more of these vaccines are administered during the same visit. It may be used for infants as well as children through 6 years of age. The Multi-Vaccine VIS should not be used for adolescents or adults.
Fact:
To verify that a VIS was given, providers must record in the patient’s medical record (or permanent office log or file) the following information:
Edition date of the VIS (found on the back at the right bottom corner)
Date the VIS is provided (e.g., the date of the visit when the vaccine is administered)
In addition, providers must record:
Office address and name and title of the person who administers the vaccine
Date the vaccine is administered
Vaccine manufacturer and lot number
Fact:
VISs are not required by law to be used for certain vaccines not covered under the National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act (i.e., anthrax, Japanese encephalitis, pneumococcal polysaccharide, rabies, shingles, typhoid, and yellow fever), unless they have been purchased under CDC contract. However, CDC recommends that VISs be used whenever these vaccines are given.
Fact:
VISs should be given in a language/format that the recipient can understand, whenever possible. For patients who donít read or speak English, the law requires that providers ensure all patients (or parent/legal representatives) receive a VIS, regardless of their ability to read English. The Immunization Action Coalition provides VISs in more than 30 languages on its website at www.immunize.org/vis.
Here are some additional important facts about the use of VISs:
Immunization Action Coalition
"Itís Federal Law: You Must Give Your Patients Current VISs"
VIS general information and translations in more than 30 languages
"Current Dates of VISs"
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
VIS website
VIS Facts Web page
VIS FAQ Web page
What's New with VISs
2015 ISSUES >> view all
DECEMBER 2015
Preventive Medicine: Be Sure Your Staff Is Not Making Any of These Frequently Reported Vaccine Administration Errors
NOVEMBER 2015
IAC's Needle Tips Just Released Online!
OCTOBER 2015
IAC's Free Workshops on Using Standing Orders
SEPTEMBER 2015
New Initiative About Giving Second Dose of Meningococcal (MCV4)
AUGUST 2015
Is Your Practice Following Federal Law When Using Vaccine Information Statements?
JULY 2015
Screening Patients for Contraindications and Precautions to Vaccination
JUNE 2015
Suggestions About Finding Old Immunization Records
MAY 2015
Just Released! Fifth Edition of "The Vaccine Handbook: A Practical Guide for Clinicians"
APRIL 2015
Important New Vaccine Recommendations from CDC's February 2015 ACIP Meeting
MARCH 2015
New Issues of Needle Tips and Vaccinate Adults Now Available
FEBRUARY 2015
CDCís 2015 Immunization Schedules for Children and Adults, and IACís Concise Summaries of Recommendations are Free and Ready to Use
JANUARY 2015
Do You Know Which Vaccines are Specifically Recommended for Healthcare Personnel in Your Workplace?
 
This page was updated on October 13, 2015.
This page was reviewed on October 13, 2015.
 
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