KNOX COUNTY, Tenn. — The Knox County Health Department (KCHD) has launched an online registration portal for the COVID-19 vaccine. Right now, those eligible for the vaccine are health care workers, first responders, and those 75 and older.
However, there are no available appointments or opportunities to join a wait list at this time.
KCHD said they received 5,200 more doses of the vaccine, but most of those were allocated for second doses. They were taking 975 appointments for next Friday, but those filled within an hour.
More appointments will be opened when KCHD receives more vaccines.
"We don't know what we're getting each week and the state doesn't even know what we're getting each week," Dr. Buchanan said on Thursday. "That makes it hard to plan."
The portal to sign up for the vaccine is different than the one for the rest of our local counties that are managed by the Tennessee Department of Health. You can sign up for those appointments here.
"We'd like to get what we want when we want it," Dr. Buchanan said. "Please be patient and continue to practice the five core actions."
When you sign up on KCHD's portal, you will be asked to verify they meet current eligibility requirements. After reviewing eligibility requirements, individuals will see vaccine clinic locations, schedule blocks and available appointments within those blocks. From there, selecting the appointment and providing necessary personal information will work just as a number of other common appointment scheduling sites work.
When you show up for your appointment, you will need to verify your employment with a work badge that shows a name and/or photo or your age with a photo ID.
“Our goal is to get vaccines to our community as quickly as we can and this online platform will help us do that,” said Senior Director and Public Health Officer Dr. Martha Buchanan. “We know this is something that will both simplify the scheduling of vaccination appointments and alleviate some of the call volume to our Public Information Line.”
If you don't have internet access, you can still make appointments by calling the KCHD Public Information Line (865-215-5555). KCHD is working to increase call center capacity. More information will be available next week.
KCHD updates vaccine distribution data once a week on the Health Department’s vaccination page. These vaccines are in addition to thousands of other vaccines being distributed in the community by local hospitals as well as those by corporate pharmacies for long-term care facility employees and residents.
Separate clinics will be scheduled for those who need their second doses. KCHD will contact the impacted people and let them know how to get the second vaccine.