RENO—Public health officials quietly rolled out a live chat feature on the statewide COVID-19 vaccine information website, NVCOVIDFighter.org, at the end of April. The new feature, they said, is designed to make the site more accessible to all Nevadans and reduce barriers to getting COVID-19 vaccination information. Since its launch on April 23 more than 1,000 chats have been completed.
Immunize Nevada, a statewide nonprofit, worked with the Nevada Department of Health and Human Services, Division of Public and Behavioral Health to launch the feature.
“We serve the entire state with this website, and everyone has an equal right to lifesaving information about these vaccines,” said Immunize Nevada Executive Director Heidi Parker. “As we continue to work to end the COVID-19 pandemic, we recognize the importance of accessibility and equity, getting as many people as possible the information they need to find COVID-19 vaccine appointments and updates.”
The chat feature is staffed by the same team that manages the state’s vaccine hotline, and will be available from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily. After-hours, the chat feature can be used to send an email to the team for next-day response. Google Translate is being used to offer the service in multiple languages.
The live chat feature becomes the third way Nevadans can get information about COVID-19 vaccines and appointments from the state. They can also browse the website at NVCOVIDFighter.org or call the state’s vaccine hotline at 1-800-401-0946, 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily.
“Accessibility has been a cornerstone of the COVID-19 vaccine rollout, and this step increases digital accessibility,” Parker explained. “A disability — including hearing, visual or colorblindness — should never keep someone from participating in a web conversation. It’s just another tool we’re using to reach as many Nevadans as possible, and visitors to our website are using it and getting the information they need,” Parker said.
COVID-19 vaccines are available in communities statewide now and vaccination is open to everyone 16 and older.
Source: Immunize Nevada