Va. statewide preregistration site for COVID-19 vaccine launches smoothly

Virginia’s new statewide preregistration site to receive a coronavirus vaccination launched smoothly Tuesday morning.

Even before the scheduled 8 a.m. debut, the Virginia Department of Health site was online, providing a consistent signup process for residents across the state. Last Friday, VDH announced the statewide site, saying it would streamline the registration process and consolidate previously-gathered data from county health departments. (Fairfax County has opted out of using the state system, and residents there are urged to continue preregistering on the county’s site)

I used my smartphone to sign up, and found the process intuitive and easy to follow; it took about five minutes.

Once on the site, you’ll type in your name, address, employer information, and contact preferences — email, text or phone call.

After that, you’ll answer a series of yes-or-no questions, by touching the screen or clicking. Questions include whether you have allergies to medications, or any special conditions that should be taken into consideration when it’s time to receive a vaccination.

Clicking on screening questions about living situation, medical conditions and job description performs the function of determining what priority phase a person falls in. Currently, Virginia remains in Phase 1b, for frontline essential workers and those over 65.

While the site doesn’t specify which category an applicant falls into, the phases are listed on other VDH sites.

After clicking through the questions comes an immediate text or email: “Your preregistration was successful! Your reference code is ‘xxxxxxxxxx.'”

In addition, the user is told they can expect weekly updates via their preferred contact information. When a person is eligible, according to the VDH priority list, they will receive notification, with instructions of how to register for an appointment.

While the site informs applicants that it may take months before everyone who is eligible receives a vaccination, they can verify their enrollment at any time.

At a colorful button labeled Check The List, entering the enrollee’s email address or phone number or reference code prompts the database to provide reassurance that a person is in the system.


More Coronavirus News

Looking for more information? D.C., Maryland and Virginia are each releasing more data every day. Visit their official sites here: Virginia | Maryland | D.C.

Neal Augenstein

Neal Augenstein has been a reporter at WTOP since 1997. Through the years, Neal has covered many of the crimes and trials that have gripped the region. Neal's been pleased to receive awards over the years for hard news, feature reporting, use of sound and sports.

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