Volusia County activates call center for questions about vaccine availability

15 staff members picking up hundreds of calls each day

VOLUSIA COUNTY, Fla. – Inside Volusia County’s Emergency Operations Center, 15 socially distanced staff members pick up phones that won’t stop ringing as the county has activated its Citizens Information Center that usually is only in use for hurricanes.

“Our team in there is working away, they are talking to people, they are reassuring people and doing everything they can to make people feel positive of what is going on in a trying time,” Volusia County spokeswoman Kate Sark said.

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The call center activated on a day the county officials knew the phones would be ringing as Volusia County opened up 500 new appointments Wednesday morning for a vaccine event for those 65 and older at the Volusia County fairgrounds scheduled for Thursday.

Sark answers some of the most commonly asked questions that came into the call center Wednesday.

Q: How do I make an appointment for a vaccine event?

A: “The answer is that when an event is announced, we publish an Eventbrite link online. The best way to find that is Volusia.org/coronavirus and we publish when that registration will open. If you don’t have internet access, you can call our Citizens Information Line at 866-345-0345 and they will be able to help you get registered as well.”

Q: Where could I find information about upcoming events?

A: “The health department in Volusia County is waiting until the county receives vaccines in hand to announce events. That is because we want to ensure that we fulfill any appointments that we make and that we can vaccinate all those people we make appointments for. So, we hold off while we are making plans behind the scenes and prepared until we know exactly how many vaccines we have and then we can open it up to the public.”

Q: Why can’t I make an appointment?

A: “We recognize the frustration with not being able to make an appointment. We have had tens of thousands of individuals try to get registered today with just a small number of appointments open. So what we are telling people is please be patient, stay tuned for upcoming events, there are other resources being announced within our county.”

Sark said there are many ways to follow any announcements made by Volusia County in regards to upcoming vaccine events, which are made public here.

For the latest information on COVID-19 vaccination events organized by the Volusia County and DOH-Volusia, you can check that website along with the Volusia County Emergency Management Facebook and Twitter pages.

Individuals can also text “VolusiaReady” to 99411 to sign up for CodeRED to get updates on COVID-19 vaccinations in Volusia County.

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