Spokane residents snapped up the latest COVID-19 vaccine appointments within an hour of CHAS announcing Monday that it had several thousand more shots to give later this week at the Spokane Veterans Memorial Arena.
There were roughly 2,500 appointments available on its scheduling website from Thursday to Sunday this week. And once again, interest was high and the appointments were quickly filled.
Health care and frontline workers and residents 65 years old and older or 50 years old and older in multigenerational households were eligible. Those without internet access can call CHAS at (509) 444-8200 to make an appointment if slots are available.
CHAS expected the appointments to fill quickly after opening for registrations Monday evening.
Kelley Charvet, chief administrative officer at CHAS, told reporters the scheduling tool now has the ability to handle double the amount of traffic as last time.
CHAS expects to receive 4,000 doses of the Moderna vaccine on Tuesday.
Of those 4,000 doses, Charvet estimates about 1,500 will go to “repay” providers who offered doses to the arena site this week and last week in order to ensure everyone who had an appointment received a vaccine.
The Spokane Regional Health District helped facilitate transferring doses to the arena site from various providers throughout the community.
Ultimately, the dose borrowing will not mean staff at the arena vaccinate more people than the allotted doses they’ve received. CHAS will be replenishing doses to providers who helped the site out over the weekend.
Charvet said the additional people who received vaccines, which led to the borrowing of doses, were eligible to be vaccinated, but as a part of a glitch in the first go on the online scheduling tool, it allowed more people to register than there were allocated appointments.
Officials were hopeful that Monday’s online registration went smoother than last week.
“Our third-party vendor has done everything they possibly can do to ensure this process works well,” Charvet said.
CHAS has also added additional staffing to their phone line to help people schedule appointments.
There will be no vaccinations given Wednesday and starting Thursday, staff at the arena will begin vaccinating people who registered Monday at a pace of about 600 people a day through Sunday.
Last week, Spokane County vaccine distributors received 11,350 doses, including the more than 3,000 that have been distributed at the arena.
As of Monday morning, staff at the arena have vaccinated 3,737 people.
Many vaccine distributors in Spokane County are still unable to offer first-dose appointments due to the limited supply of vaccine doses coming into the state.
Latest local numbers: The Spokane Regional Health District confirmed 199 new COVID-19 cases Monday, as well as eight more deaths confirmed over the weekend and Monday.
There are 113 COVID-19 patients being treated for COVID-19 in Spokane hospitals.
The Panhandle Health District confirmed 169 cases over the weekend and on Monday, and one additional death.
There are 46 residents from the Panhandle hospitalized with COVID-19.
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