Confusion after Department of Health rolls out registration portal
Mike Seals - January 7, 2021 10:46 am
OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – Just this week, the Oklahoma State Department of Health launched an online COVID-19 scheduling portal.
The portal is designed to let Oklahomans know when they are eligible to receive the vaccine.
“I saw that it was available and called my grandparents and asked if they wanted me to help sign them up and they said ‘yes,’” said Kara Morgan, who signed up her grandparents for vaccine.
On Wednesday, the portal was only open for pre-registering.
“So far, the system seems to be holding up very well. We’ve got a couple of minor tweaks that were working on,” said Keith Reed, Oklahoma State Department of Health Deputy Commissioner.
Starting Thursday morning, those eligible will start receiving emails saying they can schedule an appointment.
While filling out your information, the portal will ask whether or not you have insurance.
“There is no requirement for having insurance. There is no requirement for somebody to provide that information. But again because insurance agencies are set to reimburse for the time it takes to get these vaccines, we think it is fair that we set up a system so we can collect that information moving forward,” Reed said.
Morgan said she wished there was another option for the elderly and those without internet access.
“They don’t know how to use an app or have social media to know when these kinds of things roll out,” Morgan said.
But others left frustrated after loved ones who are in Phase One of the vaccine rollout have still yet to receive their first dose.
Like Pam Lang, whose 89-year-old father lives in an assisted living facility.
“We’re just frustrated it’s taking so long. I keep pressing the facility and they tell me it’s not up to them,” Lang said. “I just think it’s the right thing that we would vaccinate those that are most vulnerable first.”
Lang says her mother passed away earlier this year and her father has been in and out of quarantine for months now.
For now, she’s holding onto hope for the moment she gets to hug him again.
“I want to be able to take him for a drive. I want to take him to my mom’s headstone,” Lang said. “My hopes are that we can actually sit down as a family again. That’s all we want.”
Only Oklahomans who are 65-years-old and older, healthcare workers, and first responders will be able to schedule appointments.
The online portal should begin sending out emails at 8 a.m. Thursday morning.
For those that pre-registered, be sure to check your email for eligibility.