Some Kansans in Phase 3 and 4 struggling with vaccine eligibility at retail pharmacies

Tracking Coronavirus

KANSAS CITY, Kan. — Kansas moved into a new vaccination phase Monday, but some say they’re still left behind when they try to make an appointment with several pharmacies.

Gary Saint from Wyndotte County said he’s one of them.

“It just seems like they aren’t updating anything,” he said.

Saint said there was a sigh of relief when the state moved into Phases 3 and 4, but on Monday, that relief turned into worry when he tried to book an appointment with Walgreen’s and Walmart’s pharmacy websites. But according to their websites, he wasn’t eligible.

“On the Walmart (website), it gave a list of eligibility of 65-plus and 7 or 8 other ones that all appeared to be all of Phase 2 and some of Phase 1,” he said.

Saint said after having no luck with those websites, he went to another retail pharmacy, CVS. Its website said he wasn’t eligible either.

After seeing no availability for his phase, Saint said he drove 40 miles away to St. Joseph, Missouri.

“It was worth it to get the vaccine,” he said.

FOX4 reached out to these pharmacies to learn more about the issue and find out when Kansans in Phases 3 and 4 can expect to be able to sign up online.

Every pharmacy said they were experiencing a delay in updating the system that allows Kansans to make appointments.

CVS said it could take an additional 72 hours for an update. Representatives for Walmart said there is no definite timeline. In a statement, Walmart said those eligible for a vaccine in Phases 3 and 4 can call their local pharmacy about the Waste Protocol option, where doses of remaining vaccines of the day are administered to individuals who may need one.

Saint said he’s speaking out for others who may find an appointment at a pharmacy but they’re at the right place at the wrong time.

“I know a lot of people I work with, family members, they are anxious to get the vaccine,” he said. “I want to go out and support businesses again, but can’t until we get the vaccine.”

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