ADPH expansion of COVID-19 groups leads to headaches for many

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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. – The Alabama Department of Public Health has announced more people will soon be able to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. With this announcement has come a headache many seniors across Alabama are feeling.

ADPH has announced the COVID-19 vaccine will be administered to those 75 and older and first responders (including law enforcement and firefighters) by appointment only.

ADPH has set up a hotline for residents to call and register for the vaccine waitlist. The number is (855) 566-5333. Calls are answered from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. seven days a week.

People across Alabama have been calling the ADPH hotline and gotten nothing but a busy signal. The phone number has received over 300,000 calls before 2 pm.

M.D Smith is an author and retired businessman, he says he has tried calling 30 or 40 times today and every time has gotten a busy signal. He was doing as the ADPH asked, keep trying if you can’t get through. Smith hopes that a fix is coming soon.

Dr. Karen Landers with the Alabama Department of Public Health, says they are working to fix the issues. “Adding some additional staff, even some hourly nursing staff, and taking all the measures we can.”

An inability to reach a person on the ADPH line caused people to try their local hospitals to schedule an appointment. This led to overwhelmed switchboards and hospitals having trouble helping patients.

To help combat this Huntsville Hospital has created an online form for people to fill out to get on the vaccination waiting list. Offering some renewed hope for those who view the pandemic as a battle to stay alive.

For those able to book an appointment the ADPH plans to begin administering the vaccine on Monday, January 18.

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