Each week, we place an order for COVID vaccines. We then eagerly wait for the Chicago Department of Public Health to review the request. Sometimes we get the quantity we have requested, while other weeks we get a reduced amount, and some weeks we get nothing at all. This week, we were told to expect 5,000 doses on Tuesday, February 16. Upon receiving that news, we earmarked nearly 2,000 of those doses for individuals who were scheduled to get their second vaccine beginning today (Friday, February 19). Unfortunately, when Tuesday arrived, no vaccines were delivered.
We were informed that the inclement weather in the south caused the issue and they would be sent as soon as possible. We waited. Wednesday and Thursday both came and went. Soon, we were at just 60 doses remaining. On Thursday evening, we were told that the earliest possible date we’d see vaccines would be Monday, February 22. It was at this point that we had to inform our patients who were scheduled today, Friday, February 19 and through the weekend, that we’d have to postpone their vaccine. This is never something we want to do.
This morning, we received news that a shipment may in fact arrive before the weekend. This made us cautiously optimistic. Unfortunately, as of 1:30pm, there has been no delivery. The moment doses arrive, we will execute a plan to see patients as quickly as possible. Stay tuned for further updates via email.
The second dose of the Moderna vaccine is to be administered between 28 and 42 days after the first dose is given. Every patient will be accommodated within this window. There will be no issues in terms of the effectiveness of the vaccine, as second doses will be given in time.
Innovative Express Care is a small business. Pre-pandemic, we had 100 employees across our six medical practices. We now employee 300, most of whom are medical assistants, scribes and lab technicians working tirelessly to administer COVID tests and vaccines. We see over 2,000 patients a day for COVID testing, and hundreds more for vaccine appointments. Our call volume is extremely high. While we do our absolute best to answer, we do not have a call center like large hospitals and health groups. For this reason, the best way to contact us is via email.
We use online booking and online registration for your convenience and to ensure you don’t have to wait to speak with someone. We are committed to seeing as many patients as possible per day to end this pandemic. That commitment to patient care stretches our administrative team. Our system is not perfect, but we do our best.
Again, thank you for your patience and understanding this week. We hope this explanation helps you understand the situation. We are committed to our community and will continue to work hard for our patients.