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Yes, the CDC makes unsolicited phone calls

After receiving two calls from a number claiming to be with the CDC, Linda asked if she was being scammed. Here’s how we VERIFIED that the calls were legit.
Credit: nikkimeel - stock.adobe.com

When it comes to unsolicited phone calls, it can be difficult to tell if you’re dealing with a scammer. 

That’s why Linda reached out to VERIFY. She asked whether an unexpected call claiming to come from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) was a scam. 


Does the CDC make unsolicited phone calls?




This is true.

Yes, the CDC makes unsolicited phone calls as part of its National Immunization Surveys.


The phone calls Linda received came from the CDC as part of a National Immunization Survey. 

Linda shared that the calls came from the phone number 404-806-4812. On its website, the CDC lists that phone number and three others as those associated with various National Immunization Surveys.

These are the three other phone numbers on the CDC website: 

  • 404-809-2195
  • 404-806-4810
  • 404-806-4811

The CDC explains that the survey responses help guide state and national health policies by providing information about childhood vaccinations, COVID-19 vaccine coverage and other topics. More information about the surveys is available on the CDC website

A letter from José Romero, director of the CDC’s National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases, says phone numbers for the surveys are chosen at random by a computer. The National Opinion and Research Center (NORC) at the University of Chicago, which has carried out the surveys since 2005, then contacts the random participants.

Results for child and teen surveys are released in the spring every year, NORC says, while COVID-19 and flu surveys are “continuous and reported weekly for real-time estimates.”

Participation in the survey is voluntary, and you can also decide not to answer one or more questions, Romero says in the letter.

If you have questions about any of the surveys, you can call NORC at 1-877-220-4805.

Though the CDC is making unsolicited calls as part of a legitimate immunization survey, it is always a good idea to be wary of them in general. 

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) warns that “if someone calls you out of the blue and asks you to hand over personal information or wire money or pay with a gift card, it’s a scam.”

If you ever have questions about a call, the FTC advises you to simply hang up. You can also report the call at DoNotCall.gov.

The VERIFY team works to separate fact from fiction so that you can understand what is true and false. Please consider subscribing to our daily newsletter, text alerts and our YouTube channel. You can also follow us on Snapchat, Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and TikTok. Learn More »

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