PITTSBURGH, PA (KDKA) – Health leaders announced on Friday that Pennsylvania received 40,000 more COVID-19 vaccine doses this week to distribute, yet hundreds if not thousands of people still can’t find an appointment.
Four million people in the Commonwealth qualify under the 1A vaccination plan.READ MORE: The Natural Filtration System Movement: Rain Barrels Help You Conserve Water, And Keep Excess Water Out Of Storm Drains
“They kept adding and adding eligibility and I kept saying, ‘you can add as many people as you want, but if there are no appointments available, what’s the point?'” said Rosemarie Buti.
Buti secured an appointment Friday morning after weeks of hitting refresh and adding her name to waitlists. She told KDKA in most cases the appointments were gone before she even heard of the event.
“That is true. Our social media group at AHN has been working with the Facebook groups. Let me find you a vaccine around the region by giving them a heads up of what our criteria are and when we will have appointments available,” said Dr. Amy Crawford-Faucher.READ MORE: Lawsuit Places Blame For 2 Coronavirus Cases On Washington County Home Health Care Company
Dr. Crawford-Faucher said everyone is calling looking for availability. To prevent chaos to the system, Allegheny Health Network is utilizing social media rather than announcing 2,000 appointments will open at this time.
“It’s going to crash our system potentially. We are not trying to be obstructionists, it’s really trying to balance an extremely constrained resource,” Crawford-Faucher said.
She told KDKA she feels the public’s pain, but even still, AHN doesn’t know how many doses it will receive until a week before — a problem that continues at the state level.
“I want to be careful to overpromise. As I’ve said, the vaccine supply has been extremely limited. We work with our partners at the Pennsylvania Emergency Management and County EMAs to identify where we can allocate those vaccine and where it makes sense to set up those vaccination sites,” said Lindsey Mauldin with the Pennsylvania Department of Health.MORE NEWS: City Of Pittsburgh Gets $4M In Transportation Funds From State
Once supply is no longer an issue, the public may see more mass vaccination clinics pop up.