Model Interstate Immunization Information Sharing Statute
Click here to view the February 17, 2005 PowerPoint presentation to the CDC's Program Managers Immunization Registry Work Group.
According to the Healthy People 2010 initiative, population-based immunization registries will be a cornerstone of the nation’s immunization system by 2010.” One of the objectives of the initiative includes the goal of increasing the proportion of children who participate in these immunization information systems (also known as immunization registries) to 95% of children under age 6. The CDC reports that as of 2007, every state is either operating or developing statewide or regional immunization information systems, which have enrolled approximately 43% to 71% of children aged 6 years or younger. However, few immunization information systems have legal agreements to share immunization data across state lines.
Nationwide, families often change their residence from state to state. Other persons, particularly those who live close to state borders, may receive immunization services in a jurisdiction other than where they attend school. To ensure that vaccination information follows the individual, immunization information systems must develop the capability to exchange data among jurisdictions.
To assist states who would like to begin sharing immunization information across state lines, Every Child By Two (ECBT) partnered with The Department of Health Policy at The George Washington University School of Public Health and Health Services to create a model interstate immunization information sharing statute. It was developed after consultation with numerous immunization registry managers, public health officials, and legal researchers. This model statute proposes language to state legislators, public health officials and others who wish to ensure the timely, secure interstate exchange of immunization information. The model was developed after consultation with registry managers, public health officials, and legal researchers. It is expected that policymakers will use the draft as a tool, and that each jurisdiction will tailor the language according to their states’ individual needs.
The draft addresses the seven elements that are necessary for inclusion in a statute intended to promote exchange of immunization data for personal and public health purposes while protecting the confidentiality of personal information. The seven elements are outlined below:
- Immunization information systems shall be permitted to transmit immunization data to authorized systems in other states.
- Participants shall be provided with written educational materials about the benefits of immunization information sharing among immunization information systems.
- State health officers shall be permitted to enter into agreements to exchange information with other states.
- The law shall cover all forms of information sharing.
- Only pertinent immunization information shall be disclosed.
- Authorized entities other than immunization information systems shall be permitted to receive pertinent data.
The information sharing law will not alter the state’s current notification and opt out requirements.
If you have any questions about the model statute, please contact Jennifer Zavolinsky, Director, Outreach Initiatives by email at Jennifer@ecbt.org or by phone at (202) 783-7034 ext. 21.