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  • DHEC uses the frustrating CDC VAMS website
    DHEC uses the frustrating CDC VAMS website

Another headache from our health experts

When are they going to get anything right?

We hate to keep criticizing our state health officials but they ask for it.
DHEC officials told the Chronicle their new online system will make it easier for you to set vaccination appointments. 
They want frustrated callers to use their new covid hot line: 1-866-365-8110. They have 240 phone operators 7 am to 7 pm, 7 days a week, they said. 
That sounds good in theory but less so in practice. Chronicle readers report calling the hot line and felt they were given a bureaucratic run-around.
One was told DHEC uses the CDC VAMS website but appointments are booked through April.
The reader was told to call the Lexington County Health Dept. where he was told to call Lexington Medical Center.
The hospital told him they are taking no new appointments due to  high demand from people already with appointments.
“All of this is just a mess,” the reader said. “How are people supposed to get vaccinated?”
Another reader reported taking her mother to Prisma in Columbia and receiving vaccine that day with no appointment.
Asked about this, a DHEC representative gave the Chronicle this bureaucratic answer:
• SC has 5.149 million people and has received only 657,250 total vaccines. Of those, only 371,894 – less than 50% – have been vaccinated.
• Limited supplies will only vaccinate 13.5% of our state’s total population. 
• Providers are holding many of the non-administered vaccines for 2nd doses. These doses ensure that everyone receives both to become fully vaccinated.
• As of yesterday, 352,219 scheduled vaccine appointments have been made.
That means DHEC will need 66,863 more doses to vaccinate everyone with appointments.
That’s not an answer. 
We found another solution to be vaccinated last week. 
See “We were shot at dawn” on this page below.
We want to know what you think, especially about our editor’s cantankerous views.
Please write him at



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