UPDATE: After unveiling a new online registration system to sign-up for conronavirus vaccinations, El Paso officials on Thursday afternoon announced that additional vaccine shipments were on their way to the Borderland.
A batch of 5,000 doses was headed for the El Paso health department, which will be used to vaccinate those who have signed up through the city portal.
In addition to the new doses for the city, another 5,000 doses are also en route to the county and expected to arrive Friday. Those are allocated to University Medical Center, which operates its own mega-site in addition to the city-run hub - and has its own separate registration process.
ORIGINAL REPORT: EL PASO, Texas — The City of El Paso on Thursday unveiled a new Covid-19 vaccination website that it said included an improved registration form and online scheduling system.
The new website, which is now operational and officials described as "user-friendly," can be found at EPCovidVaccine.com. Phone registrations can also be made at 21-COVID (212-6843).
"Individuals who have already registered and received a confirmation email advising them they have registered, do not need to register again as their place in line is reserved," the city said in a statement. Going forward, this will be the site utilized for new registrations.
Here's how city leaders explained the new site works...
- Once registered, El Pasoans will be notified about the availability of the vaccine and be provided with the next steps.
- As vaccines become available, those who have registered will move forward in the queue and will receive an email and text message from this new scheduling system advising them that they are eligible to book their vaccine.
- Those who sign-up will receive a unique registration identification that allows them to book their vaccine appointment online. Once booked, individuals will then receive a confirmation email and/or text with appointment details. Appointments cannot be transferred to another person.
Those who have registered with the city but did not have or provide an email or cellular phone will be called on the landline number provided during the registration process in order to book their appointment.
Officials asked that those who have registered on the city site, but who have ended up receiving the vaccine from another provider should send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org to be removed fro the list so that others can get scheduled quicker.
City leaders said this updated website will always have the latest details on the current vaccination priority list being followed by the El Paso health department as well as a listing of other potential local vaccine providers.
Those currently eligible for priority vaccine shots include:
- Phase 1 Group 1A: Healthcare providers and first and last responders on the immediate frontlines of the pandemic response and at high risk of exposure.
- Phase 1, Group 1B: Those 65 years of age and older, and those 16 years of age and older with at least one chronic medical condition, such as diabetes, high blood pressure and cancer.
Officials also offered a warning about online scammers with the rollout of the new website.
"The City of El Paso is offering the vaccine at no cost to the public, and will not ask you for your Social Security Number or financial/banking information as part of the vaccination dispensing process. However, we do ask for your health insurance information. If you have no insurance, you will still receive the vaccine at no cost," the city statement said.