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The CDC will no longer issue COVID-19 vaccination cards

9 year-old Josie Murdoch holds her vaccination card at Chapel Hill Pediatrics and Adolescents after being innoculated with the Pfizer child COVID-19 vaccination in Chapel Hill, N.C., Thursday, Nov. 4, 2021.
Gerry Broome
/
AP
9 year-old Josie Murdoch holds her vaccination card at Chapel Hill Pediatrics and Adolescents after being innoculated with the Pfizer child COVID-19 vaccination in Chapel Hill, N.C., Thursday, Nov. 4, 2021.

The CDC will no longer be issuing COVID-19 vaccination cards, the agency said in guidanceupdated on Wednesday.

It will also not be keeping records of people's vaccinations, as there is no national vaccine registry.

Individuals can receive a digital or paper copy of their full vaccination records, including those for COVID-19, by contacting their state health department's immunization information system. Immunization providers also retain those records.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, many places, such as entertainment venues, restaurants and employers began requiring people to show their vaccination cards to gain entry or be hired.

The CDC issued 980 million of the cards between 2020 and May 2023, according to the Associated Press.

The Justice Department has warned the public that making fake copies of the cards is illegal and punishable under federal law.

Local prosecutors began cracking down on people making fake, blank copies of the cards. In one case, a California man was arrested and charged with identity theft, forging government documents and falsifying medical records.

In another, a New Jersey woman was charged with offering a false instrument, criminal possession of a forged instrument and conspiracy for allegedly selling fake COVID-19 vaccination cards on Instagram.

A former CVS employee in New York was caught with COVID-19 vaccination cards that he intended to give family and friends. New York lawmakers then made it a felony to forge or have fake immunization records.

Copyright 2023 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Ayana Archie