PHOENIX — Maricopa County officially moved into Phase 1B for coronavirus vaccines and a mass vaccination site opened in Glendale Monday, but the push to get more Arizonans vaccinated is not happening without issues.
Around 6 a.m. Monday, Maricopa County health officials said their servers, despite being upgraded to handle more website traffic, were unable to keep up with demand. Many people said they were unable to access the website and register for Phase 1B vaccinations due to the website being down.
⚠️ The COVID-19 vaccine page is overwhelmed with people. Please do not try to access the site until after 6:40am.— Public Health (@Maricopahealth) January 11, 2021
Around the same time, Arizonans started to log onto the Arizona Department of Health Services website to register for vaccine appointments at State Farm Stadium in Glendale, which should be able to handle thousands of vaccines per day once it is fully up and running. However, due to mixed messaging, those who were able to register to be vaccinated did not see State Farm Stadium as an option.
Additionally for those able to register, some could only see the soonest appointments as being weeks in the future.
ADHS clarified later Monday morning that registration would be available starting at 9 a.m. Monday to those in Phase 1B, and that appointment times at State Farm Stadium would be available for Tuesday, Jan. 12, and beyond.
To clarify, registration for the @AZDHS State Farm Arena site opens at 9 a.m.; Registration for @Maricopahealth opened at 6 a.m. and they experienced issues with high traffic volumes and the site was unavailable.— AZ Dept of Health (@AZDHS) January 11, 2021
Not everyone in Phase 1A has been vaccinated, so it's important to note that those included in 1A are still at the top of the priority list and may also be signing up for future appointments.
ABC15 reporters heard from viewers who brought up other concerns too, including the fact that the vaccination sign-up website was not mobile or tablet friendly, forcing the public to use a laptop or desktop computer. ADHS said that issue was fixed just before 10 a.m.
Those who cannot access a computer are able to register by phone, but some are already reporting long phone hold times, according to ABC15 news partner KTAR. Some are also reporting "busy" tones and messages that no one is available to help by phone.
ADHS is urging those who are experiencing problems with registration to continue trying as updates are made to the site.
Despite hours of issues upon rollout of the vaccination registration link, ADHS says 10,000 people were able to register for appointments as of 10 a.m. Appointment times for Tuesday were available as of 10:30 a.m.
Lots of time slots still open at State Farm Stadium. The state is offering the covid vaccine to folks in 1b at this location beginning this week. They intend to do 6000 vaccinations a day and it will run 24/7. @abc15 https://t.co/PBjrDBN2OI pic.twitter.com/o5b6UcFmcM— Cameron Polom ABC (@cpolom) January 11, 2021
Maricopa County says appointments at points of distribution are completely booked for Monday, but they are working on adding additional vaccination sites. For the latest COVID-19 vaccine information from Maricopa County Department, click here.
ADHS vaccination information can be found here.