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Message from HHS-OIG Leadership on the COVID-19 Vaccination Program and Provider Compliance

En Espaņol

April 15, 2021

As COVID-19 vaccinations continue to be administered nationwide, the Office of Inspector General (OIG) reminds vaccine providers and the public that this vaccine is being provided by the Federal Government and must be administered at no cost to recipients. Providers participating in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC's) COVID-19 Vaccination Program are obligated to comply with the terms of that program.

Regarding the COVID-19 Vaccination Program, CDC has explained:

The COVID-19 Vaccine Is Provided at 100% No Cost to Recipients. All organizations and providers participating in the CDC COVID-19 Vaccination Program:

OIG is aware of complaints by patients about charges by providers when getting their COVID-19 vaccines. Providers that charge impermissible fees must refund them and ensure that individuals are not charged fees for the COVID-19 vaccine or vaccine administration in the future. Consistent with the CDC Vaccination Program, providers are permitted to bill third-party payers (such as Medicare, Medicaid, the HRSA COVID-19 Uninsured Program, or a private insurer) for an administration fee, in accordance with the payer's applicable billing rules.

In addition, throughout this pandemic the OIG and its law enforcement partners have investigated a steady stream of allegations of COVID-19-related fraud and abuse. Fraudsters are using telemarketing, text messages, social media platforms, and door-to-door visits to perpetrate scams to steal money and personal information from vulnerable people, exploiting fear and confusion. The OIG remains vigilant and committed to holding perpetrators of fraud schemes accountable.

OIG has alerted the public to suspicious activity related to vaccines, including:

The OIG continues to update its COVID-19 Fraud Alert to warn the public about emerging fraud schemes.

The public and private sectors must work together to ensure that vaccine distribution is conducted with integrity and in accordance with applicable rules.

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has issued guidance about specific vaccine-related fees and provider charges. (See Medicare & Coronavirus.)

Individuals aware of potential fraud or abuse are encouraged to submit their tips or complaints at or call the OIG Hotline at 1-800-HHS-TIPS (1-800-447-8477). Additional OIG resources are available on our web page at

Christi A. Grimm, HHS-OIG Principal Deputy Inspector General