Beginning March 11 at 8 a.m., residents ages 85 and over from across the province will be able to book their COVID-19 vaccine appointment online or over the phone.
“The launch of the new patient booking system is a huge step forward in our efforts to get faster and more efficient at delivering COVID-19 vaccines,” Health Minister Paul Merriman said. “Booking your appointment online will only take a few minutes, making things simple and fast for those who are scheduling their appointments.”
Users who aren’t comfortable with, or don’t have access to technology can book by phone. Family and friends who aren’t yet eligible can also book on behalf of someone who is eligible.
The Saskatchewan Health Authority’s (SHA) new online booking system can be found at www.saskatchewan.ca/COVID19-vaccine, and will also indicate which age category is currently eligible for appointments. It is also mobile friendly. Alternatively, patients can speak by phone to a booking agent for help with their appointment. The Vaccine Call Centre operates 8 am to 11 pm, 7 days per week and can be accessed by calling 1-833-SASK-VAX (1-833-727-5829).
To book an appointment using the new online system, you will need:
- a valid health card; and
- a cell phone number or email address where notifications will be sent.
To ensure a positive experience for everyone and better align demand with vaccine supply, the SHA is opening up online booking initially to only a targeted age group: 85 years of age and older. In the coming days based on an available supply of vaccine, the SHA will announce further age groups eligible to book their appointments.
It is critical that residents that are currently not eligible do not call the phone line or attempt to book through this process at this time. Doing so will unnecessarily stress critical infrastructure needed for these services and could result in delays getting eligible recipients immunized.
All appointments available will be shown in the online booking system. The Vaccine Call Centre will not have access to more appointments than what patients can see online. Vaccine supply in this initial phase will not allow all clinics planned for Phase Two of the Immunization program to be open, so please be aware that clinic locations/availability in your area may be limited.
Once the online booking system is operational, SHA will be phasing out the existing process of direct phone-calls to eligible individuals. Eligible patients should go to the new booking system and not wait for a phone call.
The system is designed to verify a person’s eligibility as their appointment is booked. Identification is also required when you arrive for your appointment, to ensure vaccination of the same person who was registered online. Any instances of providing false information in an attempt to ‘jump the queue’ are taken seriously, and may result in a criminal investigation.
Only those eligible will be able to receive an appointment; if you are not yet eligible to receive a vaccine, you will be asked to visit again once you become eligible. At this time booking is available for first doses only. Current COVID vaccination prioritization and sequencing, along with other vaccine-related information, can be found at www.saskatchewan.ca/COVID19-vaccine.
The online booking system was designed to be a safe and secure online experience, meeting all Saskatchewan Health Authority security standards, policies and controls. Data is stored securely in Canadian data centres and is subject to Canadian data security laws.
“Despite being under unprecedented pressures, our health care workers keep finding ways to serve our patients and residents better,” Saskatchewan Health Authority CEO Scott Livingstone said. “This is one more tool in our toolbox that will not only help us deliver COVID-19 vaccines quicker and more effectively, it is a system we can build on after the pandemic to create more seamless access for our patients to the services they rely on.”
(Saskatchewan Government News Release)