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“It’s like whack-a-mole:” Woman tries to get 80 year old mom COVID-19 vaccine in Knox Co.

After trying and failing several times, one woman won’t give up on getting her mom the COVID-19 vaccine.
Published: Jan. 17, 2021 at 6:52 PM EST
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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - After trying and failing several times, one woman won’t give up on getting her mom the COVID-19 vaccine.

“It’s like whack-a-mole,” said Deanna Ingersoll, a Knoxville native who now lives in Washington, DC.

For the past week Ingersoll and her sister say they’ve been trying to get their 80 year old mother the COVID-19 vaccine.

Ingersoll explained, “For our mom, we can’t get her in Knox County which is where she lives because they just don’t have a way to cue people in.”

Ingersoll said it’s been challenging using the Knox County Health Department website.

“You can be in the middle of trying to get your registration done and hit submit, and this happened to my sister, and it says no slots are available. They were when she started and then it’s just trying to find the next set of slots that might have availability.”

She said calling the health department directly did not help, because workers there were also using the public site to help make appointments.

“It’s a game of chance whether you’re actually going to get through or not,” said Ingersoll.

Now she’s asking for the county to better keep track of those wanting vaccines.

“The county needs to step up and be responsible for its residents and get a waitlist started, so they can organize this and manage it in a better way.”

Her advice: “For everyone else who’s facing this same problem in Knox County don’t give up. This is too important to give up. Don’t let your parents get discouraged- do everything you can. You know, start calling, start asking questions. If you can find another way to get them on a waitlist in another county do that. Find transportation. Do whatever you can to help people get what they need cause this is too important to let people just walk away from.”

She said her mom is on the waitlist in Jefferson County now.

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