Frequently Asked Questions: Vaccinations

Important Notice About Vaccine Exemptions (e.g., work waiver) 

  • DHEC does not provide medical or religious exemptions to adults required by their employers to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. 
  • DHEC has no role in an employer’s decision to require vaccinations. 
  • South Carolina law only allows medical or religious exemptions to vaccine requirements for daycare and school-aged children. That policy can be found here.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Visit the SIMON public portal to get your shot records, or contact your local health department or immunization provider. For help accessing your record using the SIMON public portal, click here.

You can schedule an appointment to get a vaccination at your local health department by calling our toll free appointment line at 855-472-3432.

If your child is uninsured or has Medicaid and is 18 years of age or younger, he or she is eligible for no cost vaccines under the federal Vaccines for Children Program.  If your child is insured and your insurance does not cover the vaccination or your insurance deductible has not been met and you cannot afford to pay, your child may be eligible for no cost vaccines under our State Vaccine program.  Contact your county health department at the telephone number located at Public Health Clinics.

Required vaccinations may vary from year to year.  To get the most up to date required vaccinations for the current school year refer to vaccines needed for school admission.

Medical and religious exemptions for day care or school-aged children are the only exemptions in South Carolina. A medical exemption can only be obtained through a licensed individual or his/her representative that practices medicine, surgery, or osteopathy. A religious exemption for daycare and school-aged children can be obtained through your local county health department.  Refer to exemptions from school vaccine requirements.

No. DHEC does not issue immunization exemptions for adults.

The SC Certificate of Immunization can be obtained from your local health department, most health care providers, and some school nurses.  You will need to provide your child's current immunization record for the certificate to be completed. Contact your local county health department for more information.

All South Carolina day cares and schools require a South Carolina Certificate of Immunization to attend school.  However, the school principal or his/her authorized representative can issue a Special Exemption form for transfer students that is valid for thirty (30) days.  More information can be found regarding special exemptions at the exemption from school vaccine requirements.

You can obtain the recommended adolescent vaccines, including Tdap, from your child's health care provider.  Adolescent vaccines, including Tdap, can also be obtained at your local health department.  To schedule an appointment, call the appointment line at 855-472-3432.  The cost will vary depending on your insurance coverage.

The MCV4 vaccine protects against several types of the bacteria that causes meningitis, an infection of the lining of the brain and spinal cord.  It is recommended for your child to receive the MCV4 vaccination at age 11 or 12 years, and a booster dose at age 16.  If your child receives the first dose at age 13 through 15 years of age, a one-time booster dose is recommended, preferably at age 16 through 18 years.  Older teens who have not received the vaccination should get one as soon as possible.  See more information on meningococcal vaccine from CDC.

The HPV vaccine is an anti-cancer vaccine. It protects both girls and boys from most of the cancers caused by HPV infection, including cervical, anal and throat cancers. It is recommended for all boys and girls to receive their first dose of HPV vaccine at age 11 or 12 years old. However, if your child is older and hasn't gotten the vaccine yet, consult your doctor about getting the series of shots now. See more information on HPV from CDC.

If you are uninsured or your health insurance does not pay for vaccines you may be eligible for no cost vaccines under our state Adult Vaccine program.  Please do not let cost prevent you from receiving your vaccinations.  Selected vaccines are available in health departments. Contact your local county health department for more information.

The flu vaccination is recommended every year.  You can find a listing of DHEC-sponsored Seasonal Flu Clinics on our webpage.  You can also obtain a flu shot at many other locations such as your health care provider or local pharmacy.  Also, many school districts offer school located clinics for your child(ren).

Shingles vaccine is recommended for healthy adults 50 and older.  Talk to your health care provider, pharmacist or health department about what vaccines you need.  If you are uninsured or your health insurance does not pay for vaccines you may be eligible for shingles vaccine under our state Adult Vaccine program. Please do not let cost prevent you from receiving your vaccinations. If you are eligible, you can call your local health department to schedule an appointment to get a shingles vaccination.  If you have health insurance, talk to your health care provider or local pharmacy about getting the shingles vaccine.

A list of required vaccinations for various countries is listed on the CDC website under Traveler's Health.

DHEC does not provide international travel vaccinations.  CDC has a yellow fever provider registry listing by state.  Yellow fever vaccine providers typically also have other international travel vaccines.


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