Vaccine Safety

Are vaccines safe? Yes.

ECBT is confident in the safety of vaccines because of the elaborate systems in place to license safe vaccines and continually monitor their safety post-licensure. As vaccines are given to otherwise healthy people, they are held to the highest safety standards, requiring more rigorous testing than most medications. It can take 15 or more years and an average of $800 million dollars to thoroughly test a new vaccine before it is licensed by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) and made available to the public. To assist parents (and others) in understanding the process of developing, licensing and monitoring vaccines, the CDC created a very helpful infographic called The Journey of Your Child’s Vaccine.

As with any medication, side effects can occur after vaccination. However, these side effects are usually minor and most often include tenderness at the injection site and a low fever (which is actually a positive sign that the body is doing its job by reacting to the vaccine). Severe reactions to vaccines are very rare. Information about possible adverse events are available in the ACIP's recommendations for each vaccine. Information for the public on possible side effects after vaccination can be found on each vaccine's Vaccine Information Statement.

For more on the vaccine monitoring, the creation of U.S. immunization schedules, and vaccine safety studies, click the links below.