Information for Providers
Information for Providers
What Is the Vaccines for Children Program?
The Vaccines For Children (VFC) program is a federal program that provides vaccines at no cost to children who might not otherwise be vaccinated because of inability to pay. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) buys vaccines at a discount and distributes them to state health departments, and certain local and territorial public health agencies. These agencies in turn distribute the vaccines at no charge to private physicians' offices, community health centers and public health clinics enrolled as VFC providers. Children who are eligible for VFC vaccines are entitled to receive all vaccines recommended by the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP). These vaccines protect babies, young children, and adolescents from 16 different diseases.
What Are the Benefits to Enrolling as a VFC Provider?
Enrollment in the VFC program will allow you to offer all recommended vaccines by the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) to your eligible patients. There is also a financial benefit to enrollment through reduced out of pocket costs to cover the cost of vaccines. The CDC has a flyer with more information detailing the benefits to participation in the program: CDC Flyer: http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/programs/vfc/providers/questions/qa-flyer-hcp.pdf
What Are the Obligations to Participation in the Program?
Providers who are enrolled in the VFC program must be willing to comply with all VFC program requirements, including but not limited to:
- Performing patient eligibility screenings and document patient eligibility at each immunization visit
- Comply with the immunization schedules, dosages and contraindications as established by the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP)
- Maintain all VFC program records for a minimum of 3 years
- Follow best practices for the storage & handling and management of vaccine inventory
- Participate in VFC compliance visits, storage and handling visits and other educational opportunities associated with the VFC program. Some of these visits may be unannounced
- Be accountable for all federally purchased doses that are administered
- Administer federally purchased vaccine to all established patients, regardless of their ability to pay the vaccine administration fee.
How Do I Become a VFC Provider?
First, you must review the Indiana State Department of Health’s VFC program eligibility statements to ensure your practice is able to meet all program requirements. At this time, pharmacies cannot enroll in the VFC program in the state of Indiana. All other licensed providers with prescriptive authority are eligible to enroll in the program.
You can apply to enroll in the VFC program in Indiana by completing the Immunization Provider Contact Request form and faxing the completed form to the Immunization Division at (317) 233-3719. A representative from the Immunization Division will be in touch with you within the next 5 business days to help you complete the necessary enrollment paperwork, and schedule a time to visit your location. Please note the enrollment visit will last a minimum of 1 ½ hours, and will provide more in-depth training on VFC program requirements.
For more information about the Vaccines for Children Program, please visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website at: http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/programs/vfc/index.html
My Facility Is Currently Enrolled as a VFC Provider. Where Can I Get More Information Pertaining to Program Requirements?
All VFC program requirements, including VFC program policies and procedures, are available on the website for the Children and Hoosier Immunization Registry Program (CHIRP) in the CHIRP Document Center . This information is available for all providers; you do not need to have an active CHIRP account to access of any of the information posted in the Document Center.
Contact the Indiana State Department of Health Immunization Division for more information. You can send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or call the toll free number 1(800) 701-0704.