Comptroller Lambasts NYC Coronavirus Vaccination Website Woes

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NEW YORK CITY — A confusing "gauntlet" of poorly-designed, buggy city-run websites faces newly-eligible New Yorkers looking to get coronavirus vaccine shots, Comptroller Scott Stringer charged.

Stringer, in a series of tweets Sunday, outlined what he called a "bewildering signup process" on multiple city websites.

"We should be #1 in vaccinations in the nation from day one—and we should be using every tool at our disposal to vaccinate as many New Yorkers as possible as quickly as possible," he tweeted. "Instead we've set up a gauntlet that requires tech support."

This very minute, there are more than 200 vaccination slots available on TUESDAY on the @nycHealthy website. I am concerned this signals twin failures of outreach and technology by the City. THREAD pic.twitter.com/f7QsBfpj5o
— Scott M. Stringer (@NYCComptroller) January 11, 2021

Stringer's critique centered on parallel sites run by the city's health department and Health + Hospitals public health system. He called both buggy and a potential impediment for seniors who aren't connected or fluent with digital services.

Mayor Bill de Blasio on Monday didn't acknowledge Stringer's widely-read tweets, but pressed for "patience" as the city rolls out its sign-up process now that New Yorkers in category 1b — which includes people 75 and over, teachers and first responders — are newly eligible to receive vaccine doses.

He and health Commissioner Dave Chokshi also steered eligible New Yorkers to nyc.gov/vaccinefinder or a new hotline 877-VAX-4NYC.

Stringer, who is running for mayor, praised the city expanding sign ups to 311 — but there was a catch.

"Good news: The City now has 311 as an option to make a vaccination reservation," he tweeted. "Bad news: The current hold time is 27 minutes. We can and must do better than this."

Good news: The City now has 311 as an option to make a vaccination reservation. Bad news: The current hold time is 27 minutes. We can and must do better than this. https://t.co/KATBMBgHZT — Scott M. Stringer (@NYCComptroller) January 11, 2021



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