• Matt Esnayra

LB Health Dept Erroneously Sent 350 Emails to Ineligible People for COVID-19 Vaccine Appointments

The Long Beach Health Department erroneously notified non-eligible individuals via email to sign up for a COVID-19 vaccine appointment.

Ok, what's happened:

On Friday, the Long Beach Health and Human Services Department sent at least 350 emails to individuals who registered with the City's VaxLB website. While ineligible, individuals told that it was "your turn to receive the COVID-19 vaccine" and were able to register for an appointment. According to the City spokesperson Health Department found out about the mistake on Saturday, triggering a follow-up email to the recipients. The follow-up email informed them that they "may have received an email in error inviting you to make an appointment for a COVID-19 vaccine," and to "cancel your appointment if you've made one, as you will be turned away at the site."

  • At this time, only healthcare workers, long-term care facility residents and staff, residents over 65 years of age, government emergency response workers, food or agriculture workers, and education and childcare worker are currently eligible to receive the vaccine.

  • Sandy Wedgeworth, Director of Public Health Emergency Management, told The Post that the Health Department is "still trying to figure out what happened,” and that “We’re trying to determine what went wrong,” said Wedgeworth. “Whether it’s a problem with Mailchimp, or human error on our end. The team is looking to drill down so it won’t happen again.”

  • A city spokesperson Jennifer Rice Epstein said Long Beach "does not contract with a third-party vendor for VaxLB or to email appointment links."

  • Cal-Matters reporter Mikhail Zinshteyn wrote Sunday on Twitter that he received a message notifying him that the Long Beach Health Department sent him an "email in error inviting you to make an appointment for a COVID-19 vaccine."

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