It’s been a few days since Quebec opened up the possibility of accelerating second COVID-19 vaccine dose appointments, and glitches are still being worked out of the system.
While Thursday was not as chaotic as Wednesday at certain clinics, questions remain.
Michael Ryshpan is still very upset about his experience trying to rebook his second Pfizer dose.
“It was totally disgusting,” he told Global News.
He says Wednesday morning, the day his age group became eligible to reschedule, he logged on to the Clic Santé website to move his appointment up. The system told him there was a problem, he says, saying he should go in person to fix it.
“It said to go to the vaccination centre,” he explained.
When he got to Decarie Square in Côte St-Luc, he realized he wasn’t the only one having the same experience.
“Dozens and dozens of people showed up,” he said.
Meanwhile, city councillor Marvin Rotrand said appointments at Decarie Square were running 90 minutes late. The local health authority responsible for the site acknowledged that there were delays on a very busy day.
Ryshpan says he complained, and they gave him the vaccine.
“I feel disgusted by this process,” he said.
At Decarie Square Thursday, wait times seemed to be much more reasonable for people with appointments.
Four different people told Global News their shots came 15 or 20 minutes later than scheduled. Some, however, were still being sent over by either Clic Santé or the government phone system.
“It’s been about half an hour or 45 minutes at this point, but hopefully we’ll get it resolved,” said Sandy Greenberg, who described experiencing the same “glitch” as Ryshpan.
When questioned on the subject by Global News Thursday, Quebec Health Minister Christian Dubé acknowledged problems were lingering.
“I think we’ve fixed a lot of those problems in the last three days, but they’re not fixed,” he said.
Dubé explained that some people entered wrong or incomplete information when registering for their first doses, which confuses the system.
“When they register themselves for the second dose, the system makes a decision. If they cannot be sure it’s them, it will prefer not to register them for the second dose,” he said.
“Because we don’t want to send the confirmation to the wrong person.”
He explained that technicians are tinkering with algorithms in order to fix the issue, but that changes can only be made overnight because so many people are using the system.
On Thursday alone, he said 100,000 Quebecers changed their second dose dates on Clic Santé.
The health ministry says the vast majority of people have not had problems changing their appointments online, and reminds that the original second dose date can be kept if preferred.View link »