Registration opened for priority groups in phase 1B of COVID-19 vaccine rollouts Thursday, but according to the Pima County Health Department, all available appointments aimed at the 75+ population at the two Banner-operated vaccination sites and Tucson Medical Center have been “accounted for through the registration process,” according to a press release from the health department.
More than 20,000 residents registered for appointments within the first two hours of the registration website’s opening, the release said.
The health department recognized this is “causing frustration” for those still trying to receive appointments through the county’s registration website, but said more appointments will be made available as it receives more allocated vaccine doses from the state.
“We know there is a great deal of anxiety in members of the public about COVID-19 and interest in getting the vaccine to protect themselves from contracting it,” Pima County Chief Medical Officer Dr. Francisco Garcia and Pima County Health Department Director Dr. Theresa Cullen wrote in a joint statement. “But there will be more than 400,000 people in the 1B priority group once 65 and older people are added in. It will take several months to vaccinate all the people in this group.”
Although appointments the Banner sites and TMC have been accounted for, individuals 75 and older, prioritized essential workers and educators can register for a vaccine at www.pima.gov/covid19vaccineregistration or by calling 520-594-5684.
The 75+ population is encouraged to register at TMC, Banner University Medicine North or Banner’s site at the Kino Veterans Memorial Stadium.
Education and childcare providers should register through the University of Arizona’s vaccination center, while protective service workers will primarily receive vaccines at the Tucson Convention Center. According to the county, both centers are set to open for vaccinations next week.
Tucson Medical Center will begin administering vaccines by appointment to those who registered tomorrow.
Also tomorrow, the Banner University Medicine North site will begin giving vaccines to registrants.
On Monday, the county will open a vaccine site at the Kino Sports Complex. Vaccine administration, operated by Banner University Medicine, will take place in a drive-thru at the parking lot to the south of the stadium. The site is expected to provide 1,600 vaccinations per day, according to the county.
“We hope to have our vaccine allotment from the state increased in the coming weeks,” Garcia and Cullen said in the release. “In the meantime, we ask for patience as we move forward with this enormous effort to protect everyone in Pima County from this terrible disease."