Vaccine Ordering and Inventory

VFC providers must use NYSIIS to order publicly-funded vaccine and report and maintain vaccine inventory information. Providers may place an order as often as every 30 days. However, very small provider offices may prefer to order vaccine only two or three times per year. Provider orders are evaluated based on the number of vaccine doses reported in NYSIIS, the amount of vaccine a provider has in inventory, the amount of vaccine ordered and the amount of vaccine wasted over the past 12 months. Providers are encouraged to keep vaccine orders at a reasonable interval and level to reduce the risk of vaccine expiration and loss due to storage and handling issues. NYS VFC staff may reduce orders in order to address over-ordering or based on availability of vaccine. For more information on how vaccines are evaluated please see the NYS VFC Order Review Process. (PDF)

Visit the NYSIIS Training page for more information.

Expired and Spoiled Vaccine

All publicly-funded, nonviable vaccine must be reported to the NYS VFC Program on a regular basis.

NYS VFC Providers should use the New York State Immunization Information System (NYSIIS) to submit returns/wastage requests for publicly-funded nonviable vaccine. Effective January 1, 2017 use of NYSIIS to submit returns/wastage transactions will be required. Paper forms will no longer be accepted.

For instructions and information on how to use NYSIIS to report returns/wastage, refer to the NYSIIS Returns/Wastage Training.

Nonviable vaccine refers to vaccine that can no longer be used for any reason including: expiration, spoilage due to temperature excursion, vaccine that has been opened/damaged (e.g., broken, drawn up but not used).

  • Nonviable, unopened and intact publicly-funded vaccine vials and syringes should be returned to the Center for Disease Control (CDC) Centralized Distributor, McKesson Specialties, for federal excise tax credit.
  • Nonviable vaccine vials and syringes that have been opened or damaged should be discarded as medical waste. Viable vaccine and privately-funded vaccine are not eligible to be returned to McKesson.
  • Vaccine that has been expired or spoiled for more than 6 months cannot be returned via NYSIIS. Contact the VFC program at 1-800-543-7468 or if you have vaccine that is expired for more than 6 months.

A NYSIIS Returns/Wastage training handout and two guidance documents are available to provide guidance on returning vaccine and monitoring expiration dates:

Vaccine Borrowing

VFC providers are expected to maintain adequate inventories of vaccine to administer to all privately-insured patients and patients receiving publicly-funded (VFC, CHP or State-funded) vaccine. Publicly-funded vaccine cannot be used as a replacement system for a provider's privately purchased inventory. Borrowing vaccine must not prevent a VFC, CHP or underinsured child from receiving needed vaccination because the publicly-funded vaccine was administered to a non-eligible child.

VFC providers must request prior approval from the NYS VFC Program to borrow any publicly-funded vaccine, in the rare event that the need to borrow arises. Borrowing can occur only when there is a lack of private-stock vaccine due to unexpected circumstances such as a delayed vaccine shipment or the vaccine spoiled in-transit to the provider. To request approval, VFC providers should contact their regional VFC representative to discuss the specific circumstances of each request. All instances of borrowing must be properly documented, reported and replaced. A Vaccine Borrowing Report (PDF) must be completed when either privately-purchased vaccine is administered to a child eligible for publicly-purchased vaccine or publicly-purchased vaccine (VFC, CHP, state-funded) is administered to a privately-insured child.

Vaccine Restitution

NYSDOH is required by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to implement a vaccine restitution policy. Each provider is given a vaccine wastage allowance of 5% in the first year and decreasing thereafter. Vaccine wastage is calculated for a 12-month period as: the number of vaccine doses wasted, expired or lost divided by the number of vaccine doses ordered.

Vaccine wastage includes all vaccine lost due to temperature excursion or expiration that results from actions under the control of providers. Providers who meet the minimum storage and handling requirements and who lose vaccine due to equipment failure or power outage will not have those losses counted against their wastage allowance.

Providers who notify NYSDOH between 90 and 60 days in advance of expiration dates with a reasonable explanation of why they have vaccine that will go unused, will not have those doses counted against their wastage allowance. Please use the following link to report vaccines that are expected to expire:

Try to use as much of the vaccine as possible before it expires. Consider running a Reminder/ Recall report in NYSIIS to identify and contact patients who are due or past due for immunizations. Visit the NYSIIS training page for tutorials on using the reminder recall tool.

Another option is to transfer vaccine to another facility before it expires, when that facility will be able to use the vaccine prior to expiration. In these situations, providers must obtain prior approval from the NYS VFC program. Contact the VFC Program at 1-800-543-7468 or for more information.