VaccinateOH Makes it Easy for Residents to Find and Schedule Vaccine Appointments
Residents struggling to find vaccine appointments.
VaccinateOH.org helped people search available vaccine appointments online or via phone or text through its interactive voice-based search system.
On May 10, 2021 there were 89,398 cases of COVID-19 and 1,067 deaths in Columbus Public Health’s jurisdiction.
VaccinateOH.org made it as easy as possible for residents to get the COVID-19 vaccine where they live, work, pray and play. While the number of vaccines available was limited, we heard from residents that they were struggling to find appointments. With the premise that finding open vaccine appointments helped more people get vaccinated faster and reduces the spread of COVID-19, we set out to develop VaccinateOH.org.
VaccinateOH.org showed residents where vaccine appointments were available and redirected them to that provider’s appointment registration site. That feature was possible by a series of automated scripts and manual data collection. The site used a mix of automated and crowdsourced data to show vaccine appointment availability. VaccinateOH launched on March 26, 2021. Residents visiting the site experienced a narrow list of providers that included only those with appointments available in order to increase the chances for the vaccine seeker to secure an appointment, less time spent searching for appointments and higher uptake of the vaccine as we strive to get Ohio back to normal.
VaccinateOH.org’s project lead using short tutorial videos to bring Can’t Stop Columbus volunteers up to speed.
The VaccinateOH.org site has 3,309 locations in the database. This comprehensive database includes many one-time vaccine clinics. We saw potential to mitigate a disjointed scheduling process for the COVID-19 vaccine with many people struggling to navigate multiple provider websites and find available vaccine appointments.
“Public health is just not nimble enough,” Dr. Ayaz Hyder, a professor at Ohio State’s College of Public Health said. “Public health departments are doing so much already. They’re just so tired.”
Driven by a passion to expand vaccine access and solve the health crisis as soon as possible, we were able to create an impact with 14,190 visits in the first week after launch (March 26, 2021), the most critical time for increasing vaccine adoption.