FAQs

Where do I find my immunization record?

Keeping your family’s vaccination records in a safe place is important. Immunization history is often needed for entrance into child care and schools, as well as for certain jobs and international travel. Here are some good places to begin your search:

  • Family Records
  • Doctor office or clinics
  • College/School/preschool or childcare provider
  • Military records
  • An immunization registry (in Michigan, this is called the Michigan Care Improvement Registry, or MCIR)
  • More tips on finding your personal immunization records are available from the Immunization Action Coalition.

How do I obtain an immunization record through MCIR?

Computerized shot records for Michiganders are easy to find with MCIR. Information about how you can find MCIR records can be obtained from your physician or local health department. You can also request a MCIR record from www.mcir.org.

MCIR provides:

  • a complete history of immunizations to help get the shots you need, at the right time
  • helpful reminder postcards for overdue shots
  • printed shot records you can use for daycare, school or camp registration

Immunizations given in another state may require contacting the registry in that state, in order to get a complete record. A list of registries can be found at www.cdc.gov/vaccines/programs.

What do I do if I can’t find my record?

If the immunization record is unable to be located, talk to your health care provider about the next steps towards updating your immunization status. It may be necessary to repeat some of the vaccines or arrange for a blood test to determine immunity.

Finding old immunization records can be difficult, almost impossible for adults. The key is to make sure all immunization providers give you a written record of the vaccines provided. It is your responsibility to remember to bring your immunization record to all medical appointments. It may be helpful to protect your record by putting it in a vinyl sleeve or zip-lock bag. If you keep a copy of your up-to-date immunization record, you will always be ready to report on your immunization history. Sometimes when a physician retires or the medical practice changes hands, old patient records go to a storage unit. It may be possible to obtain records, for a fee, from the company. Employers may be a source of immunization history. Employee required vaccines may be in an employee personal file.

How can I get help paying for vaccines for my child?

The Vaccines for Children (VFC) program gives childhood vaccines to eligible children. The government pays for the vaccines. Doctors and clinics enroll in VFC and give vaccines to children who qualify. This program helps kids stay healthy.

  • In Michigan, children from birth through 18 years of age can get VFC vaccine if they:
  • are on Medicaid
  • are eligible for Medicaid
  • do not have health insurance
  • are American Indian or Alaskan Native
  • are under-insured

If your health insurance does not pay anything for vaccines, your child may be able to get VFC vaccine. Check with your doctor or your local health department.

How much will I have to pay for VFC vaccines for my child?

Your doctor will not charge you for the vaccine, but may ask you to pay a small fee to give the vaccine to your child. Talk with your doctor or nurse if you cannot afford the fee.

Where can I get VFC vaccines for my child?

Ask your child’s health care provider if they have VFC vaccine. If they do not, call your local health department.

How can I get help paying for vaccines for myself?

The economy has taken a toll on many families in Michigan, but this doesn’t mean that patients should delay or forgo needed and important immunizations. The Affordable Care Act (ACA) will require new or updated insurance plans to provide access to vaccines recommended by the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) with no co-payments or other cost-sharing when those services are delivered by an in-network provider. Below are some other programs which may assist adult clients in paying for vaccines.

In Michigan, there are several programs available to help adults pay for the vaccines they need to stay healthy. The Healthy Michigan Plan provides health care coverage for individuals who are 19-64 years of age, based on certain eligibility requirements. The Michigan Vaccine Replacement Program provides publicly funded vaccines to adults 19 years of age and older who have no insurance or who have insurance that doesn’t cover any of the cost of vaccines. There is also a High Risk Hepatitis A and B program for adolescents and adults at increased risk for hepatitis A or B infection, as well as the Michigan Adult Medicaid (19-64 years of age) and Michigan Adult Medicare programs (65 years of age and older).

What vaccines does my child need to get into school or child care?

As you know, there are immunization requirements in effect for schools and child care centers in Michigan. These requirements are put in place in order to prevent the transmission of disease in school and child care settings, and to keep children healthy. School immunization requirements may differ slightly from the recommended immunization schedule approved by the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP). Following the recommended immunization schedule will provide the best protection for your children. When you visit your health care provider’s office, ask that your children receive all recommended vaccines rather than just those required for school entry.

What vaccines does my adopted child need?

All international adoptees should receive vaccines according to the U.S. childhood and/or adolescent immunization schedule. In addition, a child's birth country may have vaccines or a vaccination schedule that is different from the recommended immunization schedule in the U.S. Whether you are adopting a child internationally or within the U.S., it is important to have a copy of their immunization record. For tips on locating immunization records, view the questions and answers above.