The already confusing vaccine rollout caused even more frustration and anger this week after an essential employee decided to share a private vaccine signup link with the public.

During a live address yesterday, Dutchess County Executive Marc Molinaro explained a situation that occurred on Tuesday night that resulted in hundreds of people being able to schedule vaccine appointments that weren't supposed to. While the residents who accessed the county database were eligible to receive the vaccine, the link they used was supposed to only be for specific essential employees.

One of those employees who was given access to the link decided to share it with others, allowing them to jump in front of essential employees who were next in line. The situation spiraled out of control, quickly gobbling up all of the available vaccines for the week.

Molinaro says the situation is unfortunate because it not only caused anger and frustration for those who thought they successfully scheduled an appointment but also paniced those who were supposed to actually be getting their vaccine this week.

The improperly scheduled appointments were quickly canceled and given to the essential employees that were originally supposed to receive the vaccine. The unfortunate situation only highlights how desperate some have become to receive protection from COVID-19.

While many are focusing on the county, there are actually other options for those who are eligible for a vaccine. And, depending on the reason for your eligibility, your options may actually be limited.

  • Those who are 65 and older with no qualifying health conditions can receive their vaccinations from pharmacies and the state vaccination sites in Westchester and other locations in New York. The elderly cannot make an appointment with the county if that's their only reason for eligibility.
  • Hospitals are currently only giving out vaccines to medical personnel, but that is expected to open up to those with health conditions in the near future.
  • The county POD sites are giving out vaccines to essential employees and those with co-morbidities. Counties are unable to schedule appointments for those who are over 65 unless they also happen to be an essential employee or suffer from a co-morbidity.
  • Veterans can visit special walk-in clinics to receive their vaccine shots directly from the VA.
  • The state-run sites are open to anyone who is eligible to receive a vaccine.

Some New York pharmacies were incorrectly allowing appointments to be made for eligible residents who were under the age of 65. Much like the leaked link from the county, those appointments were eventually canceled. Even if you're able to make an appointment online, it's important to check to make sure you're actually eligible for a shot from that specific location. All appointments are reviewed and will be canceled if they do not follow New York State guidelines.

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