A vaccine consent form is a document a party signs to indicate that he consents to receiving a particular type of vaccine. For example, a person may be required to sign a vaccine consent form before he receives a flu vaccine. Signing one of these forms typically means a person not only consents to receiving the vaccination, but also understands why he is receiving it and its potential side effects. In most cases, a person has to be an adult to sign a consent form, as a minor's signature on such a form isn't usually legal.
A vaccine consent form may be used for just one type of vaccine or for an entire series of vaccines. For example, a person may sign such a form to receive just a measles vaccine, or he may sign one form to receive both a flu and pneumonia vaccine. If the form is used for more than one vaccine, it will usually include information about both vaccines’ risks. In lieu of that, however, it may include a statement that indicates the signer has received information about the risks and benefits of the vaccine. Sometimes these forms also include a consent for the release of related patient information to regional health departments and insurance companies responsible for paying for the vaccines.
In addition to legal language about consent and the risks of having a particular vaccine, a vaccine consent form often includes a section a person must fill out to indicate his current health status. For example, he may be asked whether he is sick on the day of the vaccine and whether he is allergic to any of the vaccine’s ingredients. He may also be asked whether he’s ever had an adverse reaction to a vaccine and whether he has a serious health condition. Often, a vaccine consent form will also ask the signer whether he has an immune system disorder or lives with someone who has a compromised immune system. Additionally, this type of form may contain questions about any treatments a person is undergoing and medications he may be using.
In most places, minors are not allowed to sign vaccine consent forms on their own behalf. Typically, a parent is presented with a vaccine consent form to sign for his child. This is typically done because a form signed by a minor usually isn’t legal and won’t stand up in a court of law.