Performance of the United States Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP): 1988-2019

Vaccine. 2020 Feb 24;38(9):2136-2143. doi: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2020.01.042. Epub 2020 Jan 22.


The United States (US) highly values the individual and societal benefits of vaccination and invests significantly in vaccine development and use as part of its national vaccine enterprise. In 1986, recognizing the small, but non-zero risks associated with vaccines, the US created a mechanism to collect excise taxes on each dose of vaccine to fund a national Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP). The VICP includes a system for those claiming serious injuries from vaccines to seek compensation, and a process to pay individuals with legitimate claims and their legal counsel. Given the maturity of the VICP, we review experience with the vaccines and injuries covered, claims, and economics of the fund. Our review shows the excellent safety track record of vaccines, provides some evidence of injuries related specifically to vaccine delivery, and discusses the financial health of the fund.

Keywords: Injury compensation; Safety; Vaccine; Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP).

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Compensation and Redress*
  • Humans
  • United States
  • Vaccination
  • Vaccines* / adverse effects


  • Vaccines