All DHBs live with national vaccine booking tool

NEWS - editor Rebecca McBeth

All twenty DHBs are now using the national tool, Book My Vaccine, to make bookings for Covid-19 vaccinations.

Astrid Koornneef, group manager operations for the Covid-19 Vaccination Programme, says most DHBs have also had their existing bookings transferred into the new national booking system, with three due to have their past bookings transferred by the end of this week.

The new system will be available to the general public to book their vaccination appointments from 28 July, with the eligibility to book phased in aged bands and starting with those aged 60 years and older.

Deputy director-general data and digital Shayne Hunter said this is the first time the country has used a national booking system for a vaccination program.

“We've adapted it for New Zealand we've tested it with consumer groups and the feedback on its usability is very positive,” he said during a demonstration of the tool on June 25.

He said the system cost a “few million” to develop and has been stress tested using hundreds of thousands of transactions. It is also backed up by a dedicated national call centre.

DHBs are responsible for ensuring information about vaccination sites, opening times and available vaccinators is up-to-date to ensure the system only offers times and locations that are available to the public.

Users do not need to provide identity when booking a vaccination, but will be asked to supply some details to match to their National Health Index number, which will speed things up considerably when they arrive at the vaccination centre, he said.

“We have done everything to make sure it can’t be hacked. With considerable work on security and privacy I’m confident we have done what we can to protect it,” he told reporters at the demonstration.

Anyone can register their contact details in the booking tool from July 28 and then wait to receive an invite when it is their turn for a vaccine. Once vaccinated, a record is automatically sent to a person’s GP.

The Ministry of Health has developed Book My Vaccine using the Salesforce plugin Skedulo, which integrates with the National Covid-19 Immunisation Register.

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