County establishes COVID-19 vaccine registry in biggest step forward in accessibility yet


TOMPKINS COUNTY, NY – The Tompkins County Health Department announced today that it is asking eligible individuals to complete a registration form that will allow the health department to contact them directly whenever a new batch of doses of COVID-19 vaccine.

The registry probably indicates the biggest step forward in local accessibility to the vaccine, at least in terms of knowing when to sign up for appointments and when they are available. People who are eligible for the vaccine are already the target population, so they can be notified when there is another set of vaccination doses in the county. Caregivers, family or friends of eligible individuals can complete the form on your behalf. The form is available here.

The registry is not to notify someone when they become eligible, but only to let eligible individuals know when they can actually receive their first injection and begin the vaccination process, which requires two injections for the most effective immunity. As eligibility increases, more people will be able to join the registry.

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“This registry is to assist TCHD in continuing planning for a more adaptable and efficient distribution of the vaccine in Tompkins County,” the department said in its statement. “Eligible individuals should continue to search for available vaccine appointments through pharmacies and state-run sites if they can. This registry does not replace those processes. TCHD continues to encourage 100 percent of eligible individuals to get the vaccine when they can.”

Eligible individuals can also register by phone by calling 2-1-1 or (877-211-8667). If someone indicates that they do not have access to the Internet, they can also be contacted by phone to schedule a vaccination appointment when possible, although an appointment is not guaranteed when joining the registry.

Individuals who complete the registration form can expect a confirmation email from covid19vaccines @ tompkins-co.org, but they should not call the health department themselves to find their place on the list. According to the department, the registry will be used to assess demand, communicate with eligible populations, and examine transportation needs to increase equitable access.

“This registry will help us identify demand in different priority groups and help us communicate directly with eligible populations,” said Director of Public Health Frank Kruppa. “We need everyone in our community to get vaccinated as soon as they can. We recognize there remains some confusion and difficulty in finding vaccine appointments, and we hope this will be a useful tool for TCHD to make this process more efficient and adaptable for the community.”

If you are not currently eligible for the vaccine, TCHD encourages you to sign up for email updates. TCHD will invite more people to join the registry as eligibility expands.

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