Kemp, DPH Open New Website To Register For COVID-19 Vaccination
Gov. Brian Kemp announced Thursday a new website where residents can make appointments for COVID-19 vaccination. The website allows those in Phase 1a-plus to secure appointments now, but Kemp said the state will open eligibility to more people within the next two weeks.
People who are not yet eligible are encouraged to register ahead of time and they will be notified once they become eligible.
That doesn't mean the website is perfect.
Jess Simons of Cobb County is a cancer survivor who called the sign-up site frustrating.
"Nothing in there that lets you designate yourself as cancer patient or otherwise compromised," she said. "It’s either you’re currently eligible or you’re not.
There is no tiered information for people outside of the current priority list, she said.
WHO IS ON THE VACCINE PRIORITY LIST
- High-risk front-line health care workers
- Residents of long-term care facilities
- Adults over the age of 65
- First responders, including law enforcement and firefighters
Georgia Emergency Management and Homeland Security Agency Director James Stallings said the process for obtaining an appointment is simple.
"When you go to MyVaccineGeorgia.com, you can preregister and you will receive an email within 24 to 48 hours with additional information on scheduling your appointment," he said. "By registering, you're essentially holding your place in line to receive a vaccine. Once your appointment has been made, you will receive a QR code. It will be printed or downloaded on your mobile device when you arrive at the vaccination site."
The Department of Human Services and the Georgia Department of Public Health are working together to ensure vulnerable seniors get access to the COVID-19 vaccine. DPH and DHS will be helping older adults to sign up for and coordinate transportation services to vaccination appointments across the state, according to a news release.
“This partnership is a great example of the way Georgia is answering the call to protect its residents from COVID-19 and get vulnerable populations vaccinated,” Kemp said.
The 12 AAAs, which are part of the DHS Division of Aging Services network, will work with DPH’s 18 public health districts to make contact with local seniors and plan vaccination events at senior centers and other safe community settings.
DPH Commissioner Dr. Kathleen Toomey said vaccination is paramount for people over the age of 65, “but for those without a social support system to help them navigate a website, getting a vaccine can be extremely difficult.”
Kemp said the Department of Education sent out surveys to every Georgia school district to gauge interest on getting the shots.
"That survey, that included over 171,000 staff member responses, shows that only 45% of staff in our schools would choose to be vaccinated," Kemp said.
The governor said four state-operated mass vaccination sites will open Monday, near communities that have been most affected by the pandemic.
Kemp said the sites will be in Albany, Macon, Habersham County, and at the Delta Flight Museum at Atlanta's airport.
The problem in getting more vaccine distributed is logistical, Toomey said, despite receiving an average of 268, 271 first and second doses per week.
"The vaccine is shipped directly from Pfizer; so, from Michigan, where there's considerable snow," she said.
Moderna's vaccine comes to Georgia from the McKesson distributor in Nashville.
"So the vaccine that we anticipate this week is delayed and we anticipate it will come at the end of the week or at the latest early next week," Toomey said. "So we will have extra doses next week."