Friday, February 5, 2021

Oregon seniors blocked from signing up for COVID vaccine shots until Monday

PORTLAND, Ore. — The Oregon Health Authority (OHA) will not allow seniors 80 and older to sign up in advance for COVID-19 vaccine shots. They will have to wait until Monday, Feb. 8, when they become eligible, according to an OHA spokesman.

During the first week, 19,900 doses will be available statewide for those seniors, a group that is the most vulnerable in Oregon when it comes to COVID-19. That group includes roughly 168,000 people.

On Wednesday, the OHA Director Patrick Allen told a legislative committee he expects things to be rough.

"Every state that’s opened to seniors has had some form of chaos on its hands and I want to be completely transparent. We're gonna have some form of chaos on our hands too,” Allen said.

Many seniors waited and wondered when they could sign up for the shot, how they could do it and where they would have to go if they were lucky enough to secure an appointment.

The OHA left most of those questions unanswered until Thursday, and its still unclear if seniors will be able to call a central phone number to book an appointment.

On top of that, OHA has a significant problem with supply and demand, said Allen.

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