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User Guide Reference

What if vaccines were given before 1998, or are undocumented?

It is important for MIHP Providers to understand that due to MCIR’s timeframe limitation (creation after 1998) some prior vaccine administration may not be included on an individual’s MCIR record. Unfortunately, there is no national organization that maintains vaccination records. The CDC does not have this information. The records that exist are the ones that were given when the vaccines were administered (either individually or within the medical department’s medical records).

It is also possible that a vaccine that was given after 1998, is undocumented within the MCIR system. Some healthcare providers manually enter the vaccine administration, and human errors exist.

MIHP families are encouraged to keep up-to-date immunization records for ALL vaccines they have received. 

What to do if an MIHP family cannot find their immunization record?

If the family believes they have been vaccinated before and are trying to locate records, the first place to start would be to contact the healthcare clinic where the vaccines were administered. Most medical clinics will have a medical records department to further assist.

If the family does not remember the medical clinic, but still remembers being vaccinated, the next spot to contact would be the Immunization information systems (IIS) for the state the vaccine was administered. Please refer the family to the CDC- Contact for IIS Immunization Records for contact information per state.169

If personal immunization records or immunization records cannot be located- vaccines may need to be repeated. While this is not ideal, it is safe to repeat vaccines undocumented. 

Another option to determine immunity, instead of revaccinating is to draw blood titers. Blood titers are blood tests that measure whether or not the body is immune to a given disease.170 It is possible for some healthcare provider to draw blood titer levels to determine if the individual is immune to that disease.  The titers might indicate a high immunity to a specific vaccine-preventable disease, in which case they would not be a need to get vaccinated for that disease. It is important to note that some insurance companies will not cover the cost of blood titer draws, so evaluating cost and provider discretion is advised.

For more information on how to locate a vaccine record, please refer to CDC- Tips to Locate Vaccination Records.171

How do MIHP Providers help to encourage maintaining up-to-date vaccination records?

Today families move, travel, and change health care providers more than previous generations. Finding old immunization information can be difficult and time-consuming. Therefore, it is critical that families are encouraged to keep an accurate and up-to-date record of the vaccinations that they have received. MIHP Providers can encourage their families to ask their healthcare provider (where the vaccinations were administered) to provide an immunization record form. Families would then use that form for all future vaccination records. The CDC also provides a vaccine template form to use for vaccine tracking.172

For vaccines administered within Michigan, MIHP Providers should encourage their families to request a copy of their MCIR record. As stated above, MCIR records are comprehensive immunization record for all vaccines administered in Michigan. Whenever a vaccine is administered in MCIR, it is required that the healthcare system records the shot within MCIR- that way the family can be assured their vaccine administration is up to date.

If a vaccine was given outside of Michigan, or the record does not exist within MCIR, and the individual has an official medical record indicating the vaccine administration- that family should be encouraged to find a vaccine provider that participates with MCIR- to have those vaccinations recorded within their individual record.173