Current Challenges Facing The National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program

The National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP) was created in 1986 as a no-fault Federal compensation program in which people injured by certain vaccines could file claims related to their injuries. Through the VICP, Congress sought to provide people with a relatively quick and efficient way to obtain fair compensation – as opposed to the long and costly alternative of civil litigation. Since 1988, those seeking compensation for vaccine injuries have been required to go through the U.S. Court of Federal Claims to be heard. Compensation determinations are based on individual case reviews through this system, and claimants must generally meet a high standard to be eligible for compensation. The VICP has done its job for decades but the system is showing its age and needs to be modernized, according to some. Vaccine injury petitions have increased to over 4,000 per year – more than double what they were in 2016. These trends have created a backlog for petitioners seeking redress for their injuries. Essentially, observers are concerned that Congress has failed to update the VICP’s infrastructure while allowing caseloads to increase near the system’s breaking point. Additionally, the number of vaccines covered by the program has steadily increased over the years, without any corresponding increases in staffing or budget. The program originally covered six routine childhood vaccinations – such as MMR and Polio – but now includes 16 vaccinations including influenza, which millions of Americans receive each year. Overall, this increases the volume of potential vaccine complaints without adding support to handle these new claims. To improve matters, Congress members have introduced federal legislation to review and modernize the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program. The Vaccine Injury Compensation Modernization Act and the Vaccine Access Improvement Act (H.R. 3656) was introduced in 2021 but remains in limbo at this point. Most agree that the program must remain strong – now and in the coming years – to ensure patients can get their claims filed and heard in a timely manner. Often, when a patient suffers injuries or follow-up medical treatment after a vaccine, costs arrive quickly and medical bills will pile up in short order. Due to the urgent nature of these costs, it is crucial that programs like the VICP can efficiently handle a potential new claim. As with any government-based system, the VICP could benefit from reforms and measures to make it more efficient and responsive to claimants’ needs. Meanwhile, anyone injured following a vaccine may remain eligible for compensation through the VICP. The U.S. Court of Federal Claims can hear and evaluate your case – ideally with the assistance of a skilled vaccine injury attorney. Through this system, patients injured as a result of vaccine error can be compensated for medical and other costs, including pain and suffering. ### If You Have Suffered Any Type of Medical Issue or Injury following a Vaccine, the Vaccine Injury Attorneys at Green & Schafle Can Help If you or a loved one suffered a medical injury or complications in the days or weeks following a vaccine, important legal remedies may be available to you. Our experienced and effective vaccine injury attorneys at Green & Schafle can discuss all options available in these scenarios. To learn more, feel free to request a callback below or call us today at 1-855-462-3330. **Source:**

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What is the VICP? How does the VICP Work? What Vaccines are Covered by the VICP? How to File a Petition? Who Can File a Petition? What are the VICP Petition Steps? Do You Need a Lawyer to File a VICP Petition? What are the VICP Vaccine Injury Severity Requirements? What are the VICP Statute of Limitations? What are Vaccine Injury Settlements and Payouts?
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