National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act
The National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act of 1986 (NCVIA) was legislation conferring unique immunity from liability for vaccine manufacturers for any harm caused by their products. In no other industry are the manufacturers of products able to avoid legal accountability and full liability for damages caused directly by their products.
The leading source of information about vaccination is the National Vaccine Information Center. It provides the following description of the NCVIA, for injuries or deaths occurring after October 1, 1988:
(1) A citizen is required to apply for federal compensation prior to pursuing a lawsuit.
(2) The system will offer to pay up to $250,000 for a vaccine associated death.
(3) The system will offer to pay for all past and future unreimbursed medical expenses, custodial and nursing home care; up to $250,000 pain and suffering; and loss of earned income.
(4) If a citizen rejects the award or is turned down, a lawsuit may be filed.
(5) Claims must be filed within 24 months of a death and 36 months of an injury.
(6) Restrictions may apply to lawsuits.
(7) The system is funded by a surcharge on each dose of vaccine sold.
The NCVIA also established the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS), a national database for recording injuries caused by vaccination. However, reporting only occurs in a small fraction of the cases, as physicians have an incentive to deny that their vaccination caused injury to a patient and to inform the patient about his rights to recover for such harm.