Emily Denis did not expect to be getting her COVID-19 vaccine at Hartford HealthCare's Foxwoods vaccine site Thursday morning. She was scouring the internet for an appointment, beginning her search at midnight, just hours before.
“I texted my friends in the middle of the night and was like- I know you’re sleeping, but I got a vaccine appointment!” said Denis, who lives in Norwich. "I did get lucky."
Denis, 24, became eligible for the vaccine April 1, along with more than one million people in Connecticut ages 16 and older. Not everyone was as lucky as Denis in their search for an appointment.
“As we experienced with other age ranges as things opened up, the demand is there," said Matthew Kaufman, Hartford HealthCare's vice president of operations for the east region.
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Kaufman said that at 6 a.m. there were about 120 same-day appointments available at the Foxwoods site, but they did not last long.
"The slots just went," said Kaufman.
Kaufman said it is important that people continue to check their my chart accounts online for more appointments.
“As we get more vaccine from the state, we get an additional allocation, we immediately build a schedule to support that and then we open up those appointments," said Kaufman.
The Foxwoods site is also seeing more vaccine supply. This week they are able to vaccinate about 3,500 people. Next week, that number will jump to about 5,500 or about 1,000 a day. Appointments are required.
“And that’s really when the expanded age range will be able to schedule themselves," said Kaufman.
Sonia D'Amico, who lives in Pawcatuck, was thankful that she found an appointment at the Foxwoods site for herself, her husband and her sister.
“Relief. I really wanted to get it done because I have a daughter, so you can save her," said D'Amico. "You still need to do everything you need to do, but it is good to have.”