ADPH reports more than 1 million calls on first day of COVID-19 vaccine hotline, asks only those eligible call to make appointments


82-year-old Brian Pinker receives the Oxford University/AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine from nurse Sam Foster at the Churchill Hospital in Oxford, England, Monday, Jan. 4, 2021. Pinker, a retired maintenance manager, received the first injection of the new vaccine developed by between Oxford University and drug giant AstraZeneca. (Steve Parsons/Pool Photo via AP)

ALABAMA – The Alabama Department of Public Health says the COVID-19 vaccine hotline continues to be overwhelmed, along with hospital switchboards.

ADPH said the vaccine hotline took more than 1.1 million calls in its first day of operation Friday.

However, not all of those calls were people eligible for the vaccine at the moment. As announced by ADPH Friday, the following groups of people are eligible to make appointments as of early January:

  • Healthcare workers (as part of Phase 1a of the state’s COVID-19 vaccine plan)
  • People 75 and older
  • First responders (including firefighters and law enforcement)

For people 75 and older and first responders, the first day they can receive the vaccine is Monday, January 18.

ADPH asks only those eligible to make an appointment – again, they must fall into one of the previously stated categories – call the ADPH COVID-19 vaccine hotline at (855) 566-5333.

The COVID-19 general hotline at (800) 270-7268 is still available for general questions from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Friday.

ADPH also asks the public to refrain from calling hospitals and medical providers directly to schedule appointments, as switchboards are overwhelmed.

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