Virginia now has a unified system for getting on the COVID-19 vaccine waitlist.
The statewide vaccine preregistration website launched Tuesday morning. Anyone who lives or works in the state can sign up to get contacted when they are eligible to schedule an appointment.
The new system will make it easier to get your shots, the state health department said.
“The statewide vaccine pre-registration system will provide a unified and comprehensive process for people in Virginia to pre-register for the COVID-19 vaccine,” a statement said.
If you already registered with a Virginia city or county to get the shots, that information will be transferred into the new system. Data migration may take a few days, Gov. Ralph Northam said, urging patience.
Millions of people were expected to visit the site on Tuesday; if you can't get it to load immediately, try again, officials said.
A Loudoun County resident who registered locally and then with the state worried whether he lost his place in line by registering a second time.
“If I was already in the system for several weeks and my place was already reserved, which data wins?” he asked.
Fairfax County’s health department opted to maintain their own pre-registration system. If you live or work in the county, register on their site.
In another exception, vaccine appointments through CVS must be made through CVS’ website, not the state website.
Virginia also established a call center to help people with questions about vaccines. The hotline at 877-ASK-VDH3 (877-275-8343), will operate from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily, with staff available to help people who don’t have computers or who have difficulty using them. Language translation services are available.
Until now, Virginia’s local health districts have been on their own to use whatever resources they could cobble together to preregister people. Phone systems have been inadequate, and frustration with a lack of response and coordination has grown.
Anyone 65 or older is eligible to receive the vaccine, along with certain essential workers and younger adults with chronic illnesses. As nearly half of Virginia residents compete for limited doses, some people have registered multiple times in the same systems.