COVID-19 (Coronavirus)
Cedars-Sinai Blog

What to Do With Your COVID-19 Vaccination Card

Covid-19 Vaccination Card

Even if you haven't gotten your COVID-19 shot yet, you may have seen pictures of a "vaccination card" on the news or social media. When you do show up to get immunized, you'll get one of those nifty CDC-issued cards, too. What is the purpose of this card? What should you do with it? And what should you not do with it?

We got answers from Donna Leang, a pharmacist manager at Cedars-Sinai.

What's the point of a vaccine card?

The CDC doesn't keep a registry of who has been vaccinated against COVID-19, so your card is proof that you've gotten your shot. Along with your name and date of birth, it displays which vaccine and lot you received on what date, so you can get the right vaccine—at the right time—for your second dose.

If you're among the few people to get serious side effects from an approved COVID-19 vaccine, the lot number can also help officials figure out if there's a problem with a whole batch. Finally, the card is a great way to help you track your history of vaccination against a virus we're still learning about.

Researchers are still figuring out how long immunity lasts, for example, and if we'll need booster shots, or even a new shot each year.

"The CDC doesn't keep a registry of who has been vaccinated against COVID-19."

What should I do with my card?

Follow these tips:

  • Take a photo to capture the info that's on the card, in case you lose it.
  • Laminate the card after your second shot for extra protection from spills or wear and tear.
  • Keep your card in a safe place with other important documents.
  • Bring it with you when you show up for your second dose.
  • Hang on to your card even after you've been fully vaccinated; you may need it to access various services in the future. As the economy continues to reopen, some businesses and employers may require proof of vaccination. Internationally, countries may ask travelers to show proof of vaccination before they can enter.

"Keep your card in a safe place with other important documents."

What should I not do?

Your vaccine card contains personal information, including a medical record number that is exclusive to you. Take a photo of your card in case you misplace it, but do not share it on social media or elsewhere. Doing so exposes you to the risk of identity theft.
With your name and date of birth, scammers can open new accounts in your name and even try to claim your tax refund. Your medical record number could potentially allow others to gain access to information such as your prescriptions and medical history.

"Take a photo to capture the info that's on the card, in case you lose it."

What if I lose my card?

If you lose your card, your vaccination site—if it was a hospital or pharmacy—may have a digital record and you may be able to get the info from them and enter it on a blank card.
If you got vaccinate in L.A. County through Carbon Health, your info is saved in your Carbon Health account. If you received the vaccine elsewhere, there might not be a digital record so be sure to take a photo of your card of enter the info somewhere for safe keeping.