Oklahoma health officials acknowledge difficulties finding COVID-19 vaccination appointments

VIDEO: Thousands of Oklahomans unable to get scheduled for COVID vaccines

TULSA, Okla. — The Oklahoma State Department of Health said it understands that many people who are registering for a COVID-19 vaccine appointment on the state’s new website and app are not finding open appointment times.

OSDH Deputy Commissioner Keith Reed said each time slot is a guaranteed dose, and they are not going to open up slots if there is no vaccine for that person to get it. He went on to say that is also why people who are able to search for appointments are not able to schedule out an appointment weeks in advance.

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“We will know how many doses we have each week when Operation Warp Speed tells us how many doses they are giving us,” Reed said adding the state can request as many doses as it wants, but the Federal government is the one allocating doses to states according to their algorithms and data.

“I hope to get to the point in the future where we have plenty of vaccine to go around, and there will be so much, that you don’t have to go to a state-run [point of distribution], you can have the option of going many places,” Reed said.

Right now, weekly vaccine supply is so limited, the state can’t even begin its agreements with corporate partners like Walgreens and CVS to begin letting them distribute the vaccine in their stores like they do with flu shots.

Reed said everyone needs to check around Tuesday for new appointment slots because that’s when the state is informed of how much vaccine it is getting from Operation Warp Speed administrators.

So far 252,320 have registered through the appointment portal. Of those 148,661 are currently eligible to receive the vaccines now either because they are in Phase 1 or qualify as part of Phase 2 the state is doing. 11,680 appointments have been scheduled. 95,577 e-mail notifications have been sent out to registrants with further information.

It is possible that you registered, but you were not allowed to schedule an appointment because you are in the second half of Phase 2, or you are in Phase 3 and 4.