We’ve heard so much frustration from readers about how the COVID-19 vaccine is being rolled out. The process is confusing. Do I register on the state website? Do I register at a county or municipal website? Do I register on several websites hoping I win the COVID-19 vaccine lottery and finally get my appointment? Many of the COVID-19 vaccine distribution locations listed on the state website are either not giving vaccines to the general public yet, are booked solid, or have no more vaccines left to distribute. Some readers are spending a few hours every day searching on websites and making phone calls looking for appointments. It’s not an efficient system at all, and it’s frustrating. New Jersey is lagging behind the other states in the Northeast when it comes to vaccines administered per capita. Mercer County’s per capita vaccination rate lagged behind every other county in the state as of last week. We hope the situation on both the county and state fronts changes soon.
In the meantime, we have created a simple Google spreadsheet with notes about vaccine locations in the Princeton region. We will be adding vaccination sites for the rest of the state over the next week.
The goal is to crowdsource updated information from readers. If you find out a vaccination site is scheduling appointments, you can update our spreadsheet by adding a comment to the Google document. The comment can be added by highlighting the field in the spreadsheet where you want to add a comment, then navigating to the comment bubble in the upper right corner of the Google document, clicking the comment bubble, and then typing in your comment when the box appears.
If you have location additions or suggestions, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Also, if you are good with technology and are interested in helping us by creating a more sophisticated interface for our tool, or you want to help with data entry and checking some individual locations, we would welcome volunteers to help us in that area. We think the Google document is a good start and we hope people in our community can share information to help their neighbors and fellow New Jersians, especially our seniors and others who are vulnerable when it comes to the COVID-19 virus.
The N.J. COVID-19 vaccination availability Google document can be found here: https://bit.ly/crowdsourcevaccineinfonj.