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Did you lose your vaccine card? Here's what to do next

The CDC says you should take care of your COVID-19 vaccine card. But if you lose it, there are ways to replace it.

If you've received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, you also got your vaccine card. 

It gets you in the door for your second dose (if necessary), and it could be valuable in the future when you may be asked to show proof of vaccination. Someone at some point probably told you, "don't lose it!"

But what if you did lose it? Or it was accidentally destroyed? 

Don't panic. You have options to get another one.

The Florida Department of Health in Hillsborough County says you should start by returning to the place where you got your vaccine, if the site is still open. They should be able to look you up by name and date of birth. If they have your shots recorded, they can give you a replacement card.

If you can't get a new card from your vaccination site, the CDC says you'll need to call your state's Department of Health. They have records of most vaccinations through their immunization information system (IIS). In Florida, that number is 877-888-7468. 

Some counties are also able to process requests for new cards. Those of you in Hillsborough County can call 813-307-8000 and select option 3.

Keeping Your Card Safe

Of course, the easiest way to avoid any trouble is to keep your vaccine card in a safe place. Keep it away from children, animals and any spot where it might be damaged or destroyed. If you carry your card with you, it may be best to put it in a spot where it won't be bent or torn.

Some websites are selling protective cases that will hold these cards. But the CDC says you shouldn't laminate it because information on the card might need to be updated in the future.

The CDC also suggests taking a picture of your vaccine card once you are finished receiving your doses. This could serve as a backup copy. But be sure not to post that picture publicly or let your sensitive information fall into the wrong hands.

RELATED: What you should (and shouldn't) do with your vaccination card

RELATED: You'll want to hang on to your vaccine card — why it may be very important in the future

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