Commissioner promises changes coming to Lee County vaccine reservation system

Reporter: Anika Henanger Writer: Jackie Winchester
Published: Updated:
Credit: WINK News

As hundreds remain frustrated about not being able to get an appointment for the COVID-19 vaccine, WINK News is pushing for answers.

Many of you have called or emailed us after you couldn’t get through to Lee County. Commissioner Brian Hamman said late Wednesday that things must change, but he asked for patience, which is something a lot of you don’t have.

Calling to reserve your vaccine appointment for most of you meant waiting, worrying and wondering.

“I wasn’t sure if I was just going to be called back, because I had gotten that far, and so it was the uncertainty part that was a little bit disconcerting,” said Barb White of Fort Myers.

“The inconvenience was having to be tethered to a cell phone for a day and a half,” said Robert Grader of Sanibel.

“The call-in system actually created unneeded stress,” Hamman said.

He didn’t like what he saw or heard on Monday when the phone lines opened and thousands experienced issues. He wants Lee County to change the vaccine appointment system.

“I think the idea of some sort of online form that you can fill out and send to us and let us know if you want to be considered for a vaccine,” he suggested.

That change won’t happen right away. Hamman wouldn’t share specifics but promised the county is improving the call-in reservation system.

“It’s happening as we speak. We are making calls actually as we speak,” he said.

“Am I officially on any kind of log or am I lost?” asked White.

“Once they tell you you’re in the queue and you’re going to be called back, they should follow through on that,” Grader said.

All the callbacks there were promised are done – unless you made it into the queue and then got disconnected.

Whatever you do, if you get a call from a number starting with 833, answer it. All callbacks are coming from that toll-free number.

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