MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A message some Minnesotans received Saturday morning saying their COVID-19 vaccination appointment was canceled was sent in error by a vendor, according to the Minnesota Department of Health.
The department said the “vast majority” of the people who received the message, sent by Primary Bio, were sent it mistakenly. About 20 Minnesotans were supposed to receive the message; they had registered for a vaccination appointment despite being ineligible to do so because of an error in the Primary Bio system, according to the department.
“Our vendor, Primary Bio, has taken full responsibility and has apologized to the State of Minnesota and all Minnesotans impacted,” a statement from MDH said. “Those Minnesotans who received the message in error this morning have been notified that their appointments are confirmed and they should show up to their appointment as previously scheduled.”
Primary Bio released the following statement: “We take full responsibility for the error that occurred earlier today, which resulted in thousands of Minnesotans receiving incorrect information about their vaccine appointment. We have corrected that error and communicated directly to Minnesotans impacted that their appointment is confirmed as scheduled. We have apologized to the State of Minnesota and all those Minnesotans impacted and are taking immediate steps to ensure it does not happen in the future.”
The original message read: “MDH COVID-19 Vaccine Pilot Program 65+, you were able to make a vaccine appointment even though you were not randomly selected. As a result, we regret to inform you that your appointment is unauthorized and no longer valid. As long as you pre-registered for the COVID-19 vaccine pilot program, you will remain on the list for potential future opportunities. Thank you for you patience and understanding. IMPORTANT: Please do not visit any vaccine pilot location. Walk-ins are not accepted and you do not have an appointment at this time.”
Joseph Pettini of Minneapolis was one of the people who received the error email from Primary Bio Saturday morning. He received 15 emails with the exact same message around 10:45 a.m.
“Frankly I was a little frantic, since it’s the follow up appointment and it’s supposed to be within that certain time frame,” said Pettini, “I was like, ‘Well am I going to have to start from scratch? What does this mean?’”
Once he received the final email saying it was an issue was resolved, he was very relieved.
“I understand that the state’s doing the best they can, with what they have,” said Pettini.
His second dose appointment is on Feb. 11. His wife, who also qualifies, is still sitting on the pre-registered waitlist.
The MDH reported that there is no indication that the message resulted in any no-shows Saturday.