Feb 23, 2021
How to Fix the Mess of Scheduling a COVID-19 Vaccine
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It is a jungle out there. Trying to schedule a COVID-19 vaccine is frustrating and time-consuming. Americans are spending countless hours refreshing web pages or hunting online for clues to help find an appointment.
Americans over the age of 65 are eligible for COVID-19 vaccines in numerous states in the U.S., but trying to get them has become a nightmare for many. Some older citizens have had to travel hundreds of miles to get their shot, and others say even securing an appointment is challenging.
According to The Wall Street Journal, people in Texas are signing up on multiple lists in grocery stores and clinics hoping to get a slot. In Nevada, online registration bumps hopefuls from county websites to state websites and back.
Experts predict the struggle to get appointments will become even more difficult once vaccination opens to the public at large. According to an opinion article written for Fast Company, the mass confusion is caused by poorly designed websites and the lack of a central preregistration site that could coordinate prioritizing and scheduling shots for U.S. citizens.
Tinglong Dai, an expert in healthcare operations management at Johns Hopkins University, says, "the best solution to vaccine appointment scheduling lies in building a trustworthy one-stop preregistration system."
Dai says, with everyone scrambling to get appointments, websites have been crashing with the high volume. With limited vaccine supply, everyone is trying get appointments at the same time, so available slots are taken quickly.
The expert says Israel, a country that has been successful in vaccinating almost half its population, leads the world in COVID-19 vaccinations.
"Citizens do not need to actively sign up for vaccine appointments," he writes in Fast Company. "Rather they are notified when they become eligible via text messages and can then make an appointment."
This preregistration helps reduce the load of calls and emails to vaccination sites and helps avoid wasted vaccine due to no-shows. With an active waitlist, says Dai, vaccine planners can more easily match supply and demand.
Both West Virginia and Minnesota have initiated state preregistration systems and so far, the process has been much smoother than the free-for-all reported by other states.
"With limited vaccine supply, the traditional sign-up model has proven to be both inefficient and inequitable," writes Dai. "Moving away from that model and establishing one-stop preregistration systems is one key to resolving the painful vaccine scheduling process."
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New York : New York hotel workers eligibility expanded to get vaccinated
New York :
Governor Andrew Cuomo announced Friday the expanding eligibility to get the vaccine against COVID-19 for hotel workers, as part of the prioritization group 1B, since in many parts of the state these premises serve as quarantine areas so that people who test positive for the virus can isolate themselves from their families. And this, in turn, puts in risk of spread to staff working in the hotel industry.
The state president also reported that in the past 24 hours, on Thursday, they had administered 179,038 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine, a new record for the state in a single day. Until this Friday they already added more than 4 million the total number of people who have received the two doses of immunization.
“Nearly 180,000 vaccinations in a single day is an important milestone in our ongoing efforts to ensure that eligible New Yorkers, especially those in the communities that were most affected by COVID, have direct access to the vaccine, “Cuomo said in a statement.
About the hotel workers, the governor specified that given the overall increase in dose supplies coming into the state and the essential health care service provided by many hotels, localities are being given the flexibility to add employees from those businesses to the vaccine prioritization pool. 1 B.
“We are still in a race on foot to keep the infection rate low and increase vaccinations. Although the infection rate is a reaction to our behavior, the vaccination rate is directly related to the supply and, at this moment, the demand for the vaccine continues to far exceed our supply ”, he specified.Immunization inequality in the Bronx
The Governor received a letter signed by the president of the State Assembly Carl Heastie, the Senator Jamaal Bailey and other elected officials of the Bronx in which it is indicated that that county does not receive an equitable share of the vaccine compared to others in the city, and to this they responded that equity in vaccination is a priority for the State and agrees in which the assignment to Salsa County it is low.
Cuomo expressed that this is especially unfair since The Bronx has the highest COVID-19 positivity rate in New York City, and therefore believes that it is necessary that the allocation of vaccines to Yankee Stadium be increased and also added one second immunization ‘mega site’ in the north of that county.
“The State Department of Health will work with him City Health Department to guarantee that this inequality is solved immediately ”, ordered the president.Vaccination in New York:
- 179,038 people were vaccinated Thursday, a record for a single day.
- 10 million New Yorkers are currently eligible to get vaccinated.
- 4,170,422 million have already received the two doses.
- 2,674,839 have received only the first dose.