Measure Would Fix Federal Compensation Program that Hasn’t Approved a Single COVID Compensation Claim

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-Miss.) has joined U.S. Senator Mike Lee (R-Utah) in introducing legislation to help individuals who have suffered adverse reactions from the COVID-19 vaccines.

The Countermeasure Injury Compensation Amendment Act (S.3810) would amend the federal statute that authorized the Countermeasures Injury Compensation Program (CICP), which provides compensation for injuries experienced due to products, like vaccines, delivered during certain public health emergencies.  The legislation is intended to improve how COVID-19 countermeasure claims are adjudicated by the CICP.

“The development and delivery of the COVID-19 vaccines undoubtedly helped save lives, and I am grateful for them.  However, we also know that medicines and vaccines come with risks,” Hyde-Smith said.

“There are heartbreaking stories of some Mississippians whose lives were upended after receiving a coronavirus vaccine.  They deserve a fair shake to be compensated, but the federal program to help them is not working for them.  This legislation is our attempt to fix shortcomings in the system when it comes to those hurt by the COVID vaccines,” she said

It is extremely difficult to obtain awards under the CICP, particularly related to COVID-19 countermeasures.  Health Resources Services Administration data shows that as of March 1, 2022, of the 7,056 COVID-19 countermeasure claims filed—which amounts to approximately 93 percent of all CICP claims—none have received any compensation.  

S.3810 would: 

  • Reform the CICP to provide claimants the same framework for adjudication, award determination, and statute of limitations as exists under the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program.
  • Create a commission to identify the injuries directly caused as a result of receipt of a COVID-19 covered countermeasure.
  • Require the Secretary of Health and Human Services to amend the covered countermeasure injury table for COVID-19 to include injuries determined by the commission.
  • Allow previously submitted claims that have not been compensated to be resubmitted and approved claims to be compensated the same as new claims.

Senators Mike Braun, Mike (R-Ind.) and Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) also cosponsored S.3810, which has been referred to the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee.  Click here to read the legislative text.