Website Helps Oklahoma Woman Receive COVID-19 Vaccination

Sunday, January 31st 2021, 8:48 pm
By: Hunter McKee


After weeks of attempting to schedule a COVID-19 vaccine appointment, one woman said she finally got her shot thanks to a new website. 

Earlier this month, when Karen Litsey would check the state’s vaccine portal, no vaccine appointments were available.

Many have signed up to get their shot, but for others like Litsey, it’s been more of a challenge. Some of these appointments can fill up within minutes.

“I am over 65 and I have some other health issues,” Litsey said.

Litsey was one of those patiently hoping an availability would come.

“The first time I thought I had an appointment booked, and then, it threw me back,” Litsey said. “I actually started crying.”

Litsey has been a piano teacher for over 30 years. More time without an inoculation meant more time away from her students. 

Josh Wright, who has a background in software development, noticed that many like Litsey were running into the same issue. 

Wright created a website that sends you a text alert anytime a COVID-19 vaccine appointment becomes available.

“I have dozens of people email me and say, ‘Thank you so much,’” Wright said. “‘I was able to get my grandparents or my uncle an appointment.’”

Wright said thousands have signed up for these alerts each day. One of those being Litsey, who finally snagged an appointment.

“When I actually booked my appointment, I screamed,” Litsey said.

The Oklahoma State Department of Health said they’re also piloting a notification system, which will send a text alert for second vaccine dose appointments.

Wright said to keep his site up, he started a fundraiser. Approximately $10,000 has been raised so far.

Click here to view the vaccine alert website.