Regan hasegawa
Multipurpose Journalist, CTV News Vancouver

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VANCOUVER –
BC’s online vaccine reservation system launched on Tuesday morning, with what appeared to be very few problems for users

The province launched its mass vaccination program last month, opening call centers in every health authority to make appointments

Phone lines were blocked soon after, with more than 7 million calls in the first few hours

BC’s Department of Health addressed the problems with both systems shortly thereafter and has spent the last few weeks testing the new online and telephone systems province-wide.

“What we have been doing over the past two weeks, we have used the web portal for hundreds of thousands of records involving our call center operators So we tested the system for significant numbers and it worked well, ”said Minister of Health Adrian Dix

The online portal was supposed to launch at 8 a.m. on Tuesday, but was up and running an hour in advance

The province has also launched a single call center, rather than having one for each health authority. This number is 1-833-838-2323

Bernie Maroney says he was able to register online in under two minutes on his phone Tuesday morning

“I’m glad they’re finally doing it, in fact I would have thought they would be a little more proactive about it,” Maroney said

His only complaint was about the number of pages he had to click before accessing the registration page itself.

“As with most online government processes, it’s a bit confusing. You have to go through a few pages to find the right place to be able to do it,” Maroney told CTV News

Eligible British Columbians can register online, by phone or at a Service BC center You will be required to provide your full name, date of birth, postal code, health number and an email address or telephone number. phone that can receive SMS Once registered, you will receive a confirmation code by SMS or email This process may take up to 24 hours

You will be contacted to make an appointment for a vaccine when you are eligible based on your age and the province’s vaccine deployment plan Reservation will be by appointment online or by phone You will select a location, date and time

After visiting the clinic and getting vaccinated you will receive a certificate You will be notified by email, text or phone call when you are eligible to make an appointment for your second dose

Starting Tuesday, people born 1950 and earlier, Indigenous people 18 years of age and over, and those identified by the province as clinically vulnerable can book appointments.

The Ministry of Health encouraged people aged 65 and over to register in the new provincial system on Tuesday so that they in turn can be contacted directly.

However, the online portal allowed anyone over the age of 18 to register for an alert

The province’s pharmacy vaccination program works alongside the new reservation system People aged 55 to 65 in the Lower Mainland can still register for a dose of AstraZeneca vaccine at participating pharmacies

Dix says the program is expanding to other parts of the province, with doses en route to northern BC, the interior and Vancouver Island

As of 11 a.m. this morning, 93,031 people have signed up for their vaccine
82,249 people registered via the online tool, 10,872 registered by telephone
26,655 booking invitations were sent to registrants and 14,752 appointments were made

Government of British Columbia website displayed on computer in North Vancouver, BC, Monday April 5, 2021 The website explains how people can get vaccinated and register and schedule an appointment for it. vaccine THE CANADIAN PRESS / Jonathan Hayward

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Source: https://bc.ctvnews.ca/covid-vaccines-in-b-c-new-province-wide-online-booking-system-launches-1.5376048