CHICAGO (CBS) — There is no way to know how many Chicago Public Schools staff members have received the COVID-19 vaccine. The district believes it is about 34%, but as CBS 2’s Dana Kozlov reported two weeks ago, the Chicago Teachers Union has asked members not to take the CPS survey.
A new vendor has been chosen to replace Innovative Express Care, which had been distributing vaccines to CPS employees.READ MORE: MISSING: Matthew La Luz, 32, Last Seen In Rogers Park, May Need Serious Medical Attention
As of Wednesday morning, there were 1,000 appointments still available for Thursday for Chicago school staff, but it’s not just school staff that is affected.
CBS 2 has been hearing from many people scrambling for a solution. Innovative Express also gave the vaccine to other companies, and when the city pulled the remaining doses from the clinic, employees from those companies found themselves caught in the mess.
A text message letting people know their second appointments were canceled sent people into a frenzy. Employees at E.J. Basler, a manufacturing company, were beyond worried. With no more shots to give due to issues Innovative had with CPS’s contract, the clinic was unable to stand b any upcoming appointments.READ MORE: Chicago Weather: Spotty Showers Sunday Night, Monday
Now 100 workers from the manufacturing company still can’t make an appointment, but a few were fortunate enough after hours online.
“A little bit difficult, but my wife made phone calls for a couple of hours,” said Billie Risley, who was able to reschedule his appointment. “I think before we cancel and send out notices that people won’t get the vaccine, we should be prepared or give them more updated information or get the websites going.”
The biggest frustration is people are spending hours refreshing a website looking for appointments. The city’s health department is making it clear all non-CPS employees will be eligible for the second shot. Despite the frustration, the city says 4,000 people were able to reschedule online Wednesday.
City officials said they would make sure no one is left behind or shut out of an appointment for a second dose. The city said anyone impacted has been sent direct communication about how to rebook their vaccine appointments, and anyone scheduled for a second dose through Innovate Express will get their shot at a special clinic set up at Truman College. The city is contacting those people to inform them of the next steps to schedule their appointment.MORE NEWS: At Least 22 People Shot, 3 Killed In Gun Violence In Chicago This Weekend
If those people do not get a call about their second appointment they can email email@example.com to receive assistance in rescheduling.