Medical syringe with transparent vaccine on white calendar background. Vaccination schedule concept with copy space
In mid-January, when vaccine eligibility was expanded to include those 65 and older, a software developer named Dan Benamy tried to help his grandparents schedule an appointment. The painstaking process required him to go through various websites of the city Health Department and health systems to look for an available slot.
Benamy decided there had to be an easier way and decided to help. Along with a small group of volunteers, he created NYC Vaccine List, a website that “crawls” various locations to see if they have supplies and appointments available. The website currently reports the availability at 45 locations offering vaccinations in the five boroughs, on Long Island, and in Westchester, and parts of the Hudson Valley. It automatically and periodically checks the locations for appointment slots.
The website was inspired by a community-driven vaccine-availability tracker in California; some people helping Benamy also helped build the California site.
The cost of maintaining and hosting the site is shared among the team.
“There is no formal funding process,” Benamy said. “We’re just using our personal credit cards.”
NYC Vaccine List drew the attention of Councilman Mark Levine and Chelsea Clinton. Their tweets helped it exceed 50,000 visits in just a few days. The team is working to add more locations to its list. There are about 130 sites to check for appointments in the city currently, plus locations where availability isn’t published online. Volunteers are reaching out to those locations by phone to obtain information for NYC Vaccine List. Benamy and his team are also looking to add additional languages and make the site as user-friendly as possible.
Source: Crain’s New York Business