MOBILE, Ala. (WKRG) — The Alabama Department of Public Health (ADPH) reported more than a million calls on the first day of their COVID-19 vaccine hotline and that influx is causing a bit of a problem.
Viewers have continuously reached out to WKRG News 5 since the ADPH vaccine hotline opened. All of the complaints coming from those who can’t get through, including Judy Persons, who has been trying to make an appointment for her 82-year-old husband. Persons said, “It was 820 times, I did not get through at all. There are times when it sounds like the call is going through and it rings and rings and then after it rings about 10 or 12 times it just cuts me off.”
WKRG News 5 found those same problems when an attempt was made to call as well. The busy signal was received time and time again. “I think it is a little silly that there is only one number for everyone is the state to call, it doesn’t make a lot of sense to me. I think they would have set it up with more people, more lines or something,” Persons said.
One of the reasons behind these problems in calls is that a lot of those calling are not currently eligible for the vaccine. Those in Phase 1b are the newly eligible. Unfortunately, another issue coming from this too is that a lot of local and statewide hospitals are seeing the overflow from the hotline from people trying to get information on the vaccine. These high-call volumes are causing issues at the hospitals with day-to-day work.
WKRG News 5 did reach out to ADPH on its plan moving forward to deal with these issues coming from the hotline, but no comment was available.