The Alabama Department of Public Health (ADPH) said it's still getting an influx of calls from people wanting to get vaccinated. Over the weekend, the phone line for the coronavirus hotline had received 1.1 million calls since opening on Friday.
Monday afternoon, ADPH announced it's working to improve COVID-19 vaccine scheduling capabilities by creating an online registration portal in addition to its toll-free hotline.
ADPH says it's asking for patience when it comes to getting vaccinated as they start vaccinating people 75 plus in a week.
Judy Smith, an administrator with ADPH, explained they are doing their best to staff the phone lines with the influx of calls. She said only call the number provided by ADPH to make your appointment and do not call your local health department because it's all hands-on deck on having staff vaccinate people who are already eligible.
She said they're blocking out spaces weeks after people receive their first dose so they will be able to come back for a second appointment for the second dose.
Smith said even if you didn't get your first dose from the health department, they can still help you get your second if you can't get it from a private entity. Right now, she wants everyone 75 plus to know they're doing their best to help you get your vaccine.
"If you can't get through the call center, don't worry, we will get you a vaccine. It may not be Monday or Tuesday, but we're going to get it," she said.
Starting Jan. 18, vaccinations are appointment only for people 75 plus and first responders, but Smith went on to say if you qualify for a vaccine and don't have an appointment and they have extra doses available, they might be able to squeeze you in. Smith said no vaccines will be wasted.