CORNWALL, Ontario – Eastern Ontario Health Unit (EOHU) residents might be ready to get a vaccine, but the provincial booking system is not ready to give them an appointment to get one.
The provincial online system for booking a vaccine appointment that was promised to launch at 8 a.m. on Monday, March 15 has seen users met with glitches across the province, but the EOHU region in particular seems to be facing difficulties.
As of 2:30 p.m. on Monday, the EOHU stated that users were unable to book appointments online due to the region’s COVID-19 vaccination sites not being entered into the online system.
This has left residents, and the EOHU themselves, unable to book appointments for vaccinations.
“We have received notice from the Province that some clinic locations have yet to be entered into their system, however they expect to have this corrected today. If someone gets a message saying “Form has been tampered with,” this is a technical problem that the Province is working to resolve as quickly as possible,” reads a statement from the EOHU. “Please note that EOHU staff are unable to access the provincial booking system, therefore they are unable to book an appointment for anyone calling the EOHU. We thank you for your patience.”
The EOHU announced two weeks ago that the Cornwall Civic Complex would serve as the mass vaccination site in the city, with other locations in Winchester, Hawkesbury, Rockland, Alexandria and Casselman.
One resident who called Seaway News stated that when he was unable to book his appointment online, he called the Health Unit to book an appointment, but was referred to a vaccination location in Ottawa as the EOHU was unable to book an appointment for him in Cornwall through the provincial online booking system.
Currently, residents aged 80 and over, healthcare workers, Indigenous residents of Akwesasne, retirement home resident and long-term care facility residents are eligible to receive a vaccine, but by appointment only.
Residents expressed their frustration on social media, including local City and regional township councillors.
The following is a tweet from City of Cornwall Councillor Justin Towndale:
My father who is 80+ called to make an appointment for his vaccination. Can’t book it because the system isn’t ready and doesn’t have any sites in Cornwall listed (yes they exist). The province has failed on this hard. @fordnation @JimMcDonell @celliottability #onpoli #onmuni https://t.co/mcedB9Ut9H
— Justin Towndale (@JTowndale) March 15, 2021
South Glengarry Councillor Stephanie Jaworski also expressed her frustration:
Its the 1 year anniversary of this mess, where mass vaccination was always the solution.
This is beyond disappointing. https://t.co/0aSmeL6NWK
— Stephanie Jaworski (@StephJaworski) March 15, 2021