SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - The Coastal Health District announced Monday that it has temporarily paused appointment scheduling for new requests due to an overwhelming response from those in Phase 1a+ who are interested in getting the COVID-19 vaccine.
The temporary hold is so CHD can ensure it has adequate vaccines to fulfill appointment requests, including second doses,
“Our health department staff is working hard to get thousands of people scheduled for vaccination, but we need to hit the pause button – at least for a little while – so we can manage the current volume of requests,” said Dr. Lawton Davis, Health Director for the Coastal Health District. “It is also my sincere hope that in the very near future, more providers will have the vaccine so there are more places for folks to get vaccinated.”
Residents can go to covid19.gachd.org and register to be notified when appointments open back up. Registering online does not guarantee a vaccination appointment; it simply gives us a way to notify residents when the appointment process is back underway.
It’s unclear how long the ‘pause’ will be in effect.
“I can’t really answer that question for sure. Again, if the vaccine supply increases significantly, our supply will increase significantly,” said Dr. Davis.
Dr. Davis said the state has also been working on an online registration process for vaccine appointments, similar to what they’ve used for COVID testing.
“We had hoped it would be ready before we reached group 1a plus, but you know, timelines change and so it’s not yet available.”
Davis said they’re hopeful that online appointment portal will be online by the end of the month.
“We know people are frustrated because the process is moving more slowly than they would like, and if we could vaccinate everyone today, we’d do that. But your health departments are stretched thin and doing what they can to move forward,” said Davis. “We’re exploring ways to expand capacity, and we know more help will arrive when other local healthcare providers have vaccine to offer, too. In the meantime, please be patient and keep practicing the public health hygiene recommendations we know help slow the spread of COVID-19.”
The health district says individuals who are already in their system and awaiting a call-back will still be given an appointment. They are asking the community for continued patience as the vaccine program expands.
To read more, click here.
Watch the full news conference on the above changes below: