Some changes have been announced for CVS Pharmacy locations that will be giving eligible residents the COVID-19 vaccine.
Previously CVS said, for the 36 pharmacies across Virginia that would begin vaccinating, appointments were to become available for registering as early as February 9 as stores received shipments of vaccine.
Originally, CVS said they would give the vaccine to people who met state criteria, which as of now includes Phase 1a and Phase 1b but on Monday CVS updated that and said for now they will be administering the vaccine to individuals who are 65+ and who have pre-registered with their local health department. CVS added, "Per the guidance of the VA Department of Health, only individuals who are on their local health department’s wait list are eligible to schedule their appointments at CVS Pharmacy."
The site was then planned to be activated on Thursday but was on Tuesday because CVS said the state of Virginia asked them to open the scheduling system early for those who pre-registered for a vaccination through their local department of health. CVS accommodated the request and Virginians who pre-registered could look for available appointments in the system.
All appointments have already been filled so although CVS said anyone over the age of 65+ (regardless of whether they pre-registered with their local health department) could look for appointments Thursday, that is no longer the case. They did add that if people cancel appointments those open spots will get put back in the system so they encourage people to check back online frequently to see if vaccines become available.
CVS said as they get more vaccine doses in Virginia, they are expecting another 26,000 doses next week, new appointments will also become available.
Any appointments that were able to be made by people under 65 will also be canceled which will free up more spots.
CVS released the following statement regarding the rollout of vaccines:
"The state of Virginia asked us to open our scheduling system early for those who pre-registered for a vaccination through their local department of health. We accommodated this request Tuesday morning and appointments were filled quickly due to the limited supply of vaccine we will be receiving.
"Additional appointments will open as we receive additional vaccine doses. And beginning Thursday, February 11, any Virginian ages of 65 and over will be able to look for appointments in our system. We regret any confusion caused by the inadvertent omission of the early access for Virginia’s preregistration program from our original statement. We remain focused on our shared goal with the state to vaccinate Virginians."
Vaccines in a retail setting will be offered on an appointment-only basis via CVS.com or through the CVS Pharmacy app, and those without online access can contact customer service: (800) 746-7287.
Individuals eligible for COVID-19 vaccinations are asked to use the appropriate digital channels or contact customer service to check for appointment availability, as opposed to contacting individual CVS Pharmacy locations.
CVS added that because active stores will change regularly based on vaccine supply, CVS Health will not provide a full list of participating locations.