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Difficulty in getting appointments
As I'm in the 65+ category, I have a number of relatives & friends that are in that age group.  Since I believe in the vaccine as an aid to helping us individually and collectively, I've helped a number of them to find appointments.  (3 have declined that help for various reasons.)  So I've seen the process for getting appointments in a handful of counties in California and one county in Texas.

As should be well known, there have been differing priorities for who can get the shots, roughly based on the CDC original recommendations.  For California, the healthcare workers accounted for nearly 10% of the eligible population.  The LTCF residents were maybe 1% or less.   The 65+ added another 15% or so.   At this time, there still isn't enough vaccine to cover all those eligible from those groups.  There are other categories added such as agricultural workers that push the numbers higher.

The last two friends I've been trying to help were one from a small coastal town in California and one from Austin, TX.   It was frustrating to not know when appointments might come on line.  Deliveries are on a weekly schedule but it wasn't clear when the appointments would open up.  Tuesday?  Wednesday? Thursday?   Midnight?  5AM PT (8AM ET)?  8AM?  9AM?   I was watching 5 web pages for the California friend and at least two for the Texas friend. (Hint: Some opened on Wed.  Many more opened on Thursday)

CVS had vaccination possibilities for both and I had been watching their pages for several weeks.  They listed all locations in the state in a relatively easy to check manner.  Appointments seemed to open up en masse and then start disappearing as they got snatched up.  There were only two locations within 50 miles of my friend.  I've never seen either have any openings.   

The CA county also had its page but I hadn't seen openings for 2 weeks.  Just after 9AM Thursday, they opened their web page for first dose appointments.  My friend was able to grab one for Monday.

Texas was another story.  They opened vaccinations to 65+ sooner than other states, but that doesn't make it any quicker to get through 25% of the population.  Vaccinations opportunities were more widespread (lots of pharmacies & clinics -- far greater than California).  You could find out who was getting how many vaccines so it seemed easier.   It was early on.

But now, it is tough.  At one of the larger vaccination sites, 188K people are registered and they are getting 12K shots a week.  One of the grocery stores that has pharmacies has a web site that exposes each individual store (not cities or counties but each storefront).  It had been fully booked for the last week apparently.  Today, sites started showing up as available.   It appears that each individual store was marking itself available or not.  I would see the same store show up as having a "few" (< 6?) spots available, then disappear, and then come back with a few spots available later on, repeatedly.  I saw some others come on with 20 to 30 spots open.   At any one time, typically about 2 stores had any appointments available.  They wouldn't last but about a minute in the list.

I started refreshing the page every few (5ish) seconds.  When I'd see a store appear (it didn't matter where), I'd click on the store to check for appointments.  About the first 10 times I did that, there were no appointments available - they had already been snatched up.  Either demand is far greater or there are automated tools out there to grab these appointments, or maybe the web site doesn't get the same access as the store's app.  

The moral of the story is that there are many different mechanisms for getting appointments.  (I have no issue with that)  If you're looking for an appointment, try multiple providers. (I suspect many are still waiting for Kaiser to get in touch with them, and I believe Kaiser is getting very few vaccines.)

Messages In This Thread
Difficulty in getting appointments - by M_T - 02-25-2021, 11:23 AM
RE: Difficulty in getting appointments - by M_T - 02-25-2021, 01:56 PM
RE: Difficulty in getting appointments - by M_T - 03-31-2021, 12:27 AM
RE: Difficulty in getting appointments - by ACK - 03-31-2021, 04:19 PM
RE: Difficulty in getting appointments - by M_T - 03-31-2021, 05:35 PM
RE: Difficulty in getting appointments - by M_T - 04-01-2021, 12:16 AM
RE: Difficulty in getting appointments - by M_T - 04-01-2021, 01:41 PM
RE: Difficulty in getting appointments - by M_T - 04-11-2021, 12:24 AM
RE: Difficulty in getting appointments - by M_T - 04-11-2021, 12:28 AM

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