The D.C. Department of Health will make 3,500 appointments available for coronavirus vaccinations starting at 9 a.m. Saturday after technical issues hampered the city’s online registration portal Thursday.

The city expanded its eligibility list Thursday to those between the ages of 16-64 with qualifying medical conditions, but the portal wasn’t properly equipped to handle the influx of visitors, frustrating residents attempting to snag a spot.

“Due to the high volume of traffic on http://vaccinate.dc.gov, you may experience delays. We are working to resolve as quickly as possible,” Mayor Muriel Bowser tweeted Thursday

D.C. Council member Elissa Silverman (I-At Large) sent out an email immediately to her contact list saying the problem was being fixed and the situation was a “snafu.”

“The online registration system was not updated completely for the expansion to residents ages 18 to 64 with qualifying medical conditions,” the council member said in the email, WTOP reported. “And the system was not checked by either our contractor, Microsoft, or by D.C. government to make sure it worked properly before it became live at 9 a.m.”

Residents ages 18-64 with eligible medical conditions defined by the health department and who live in zip codes 20422, 20011, 20017, 20018, 20002, 20001, 20019, 20020, 20032 and 20593 can make appointments through the online portal and by phone. Youths ages 16 and 17 with qualifying medical conditions can schedule an appointment through Children’s National Hospital.

“I am told that these are appointments for vaccination doses that will be in next week’s allocation,” Silverman said in the email, WTOP reported.

WI Guest Author

This correspondent is a guest contributor to The Washington Informer.

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