Columbus Public Health says COVID-19 vaccine demand remains high, despite lag in filling appointments

Coronavirus

COLUMBUS (WCMH) – Scheduling for more COVID-19 vaccine appointments through Columbus Public Health will open this Friday.

Those appointments usually fill up relatively quickly, but last Friday, it took longer than usual for the appointments to be booked.

Despite the fact that it took more than 24 hours for those appointments to fill up, Columbus Public Health Director Dr. Mysheika Roberts said demand is still very high.

On the last three Fridays in March, when Columbus Public Health opened up vaccine registration. All of those appointments were fill in a matter of hours.

Social media posts from CPH show they filled up in about six hours on March 12, eight and a half hours on March 19, and five and a half hours on March 26.

But this past Friday when scheduling opened…

“It took us 28 hours to fill those slots,” Roberts said. “So that’s much longer, but we also had more appointment slots.”

Roberts said 11,500 slots opened up Friday, more than ever before. More appointments along with more vaccination options outside CPH, and people traveling out of the county to get the shot, all contributed to registration being open longer.

“I would say all those are correct and it’s not necessarily an indication of decreasing demand yet,” Roberts said. “I think that the demand is still there. People are just trying to figure out where the vaccine is.”

Doctors have said we will eventually reach a point where vaccine supply outweighs demand, but Roberts said that’s likely still several weeks away.

“I’m comfortable with the slots filling up in less than 48 hours,” she said. “When it starts to expand past 48 hours, that’s when I’m going to start to say, ‘Hmm, I think we need to go and rattle people a little bit and get people to come get vaccinated.’”

Roberts said CPH should find out Wednesday how many slots will be open for Friday’s appointments.

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