Wednesday, January 27, 2021

We Got It (kinda)

I started at 8:15, 45 minutes before the gates were to open.  

I opened two tabs for the AZDHS.gov website on Lenore the Lenovo, one with all my information, one with TBG's.  Clicking before 9am did nothing but reset the entire form, forcing me to reenter all those pesky numbers and letters again.  

(Question for the concerned:  why does my Medicare number have 0's and O's.... one a number and one a letter, neither of which is easy to discern from the card or when it's been typed into a form.  We are old people; our vision is not what it used to be.  This is unkind as well as unintelligent - people are going to make mistakes.)

I then went on to the Pima County site; same links, but also a discrete mention of a phone number at Tucson Medical Center, our community hospital over on the east side of town.  I dialed and it didn't ring forever.  It didn't give me a busy signal.  Instead, there was a recorded voice telling me everything I needed to know.

I started to breathe again.  The voice was carefully describing the what's and when's of the waiting procedure, then it switched to a mind numbing Muzak interspersed with reminders that my wait time is over 60 minutes.

And then, well before 9am, well before 60 minutes had passed, Karen said hello.

I'm glad the desk chair has arms and a back - I fell into it in astonishment.  We were in!

She asked questions and I answered them.  She laughed and she was clear as she took TBG's information right after mine - it might take a while for the vaccines to become available, but once they arrive we'll get an email to schedule our appointments.  In the meantime, we were to look for an email that confirmed our registration and described the path going forward.

Five minutes after complimenting her for taking the stress out of an awful situation, after emailing our children to inform them of our progress, the email arrived in my inbox.

TBG received nothing.

We kept refreshing and checking and then, after realizing that my good feeling glow was dissipating amidst thoughts of being the only vaccinated person in the household, I called TMC once again.

Once again, the wait time was more than 60 minutes, a few minutes later it was 39 minutes and 10 seconds after that a young man was on the phone, asking how he could help me.  I explained the 2 signups/1 email problem, and asked if he could HELP!!!

Ma'am, you will only get one email.  You should be good to go.

I sighed, checked with him again that both of us were included in the instructions I received, and thanked him for his help.  We wondered why the email didn't mention that if you'd signed up together you were part of the one missive; it certainly would save time at the call center if they didn't have to talk to me twice. 

After some reflection, I decided that it makes sense to group the two of together as one entity.  That way we can be scheduled at the same time and place for our vaccines.  I wish that fact were included in the call center's script, though it feels churlish to complain about something that was really quite simple and well run.

And now, we wait.  We wait for needles and vials and mailing supplies are gathered and organized and shipped.  We wait for a shot that will certainly make my arm ache and will most likely give me a day or two of feeling crappy.  We wait..... and we're glad to do so.

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