Story at a glance

  • The site was originally developed in 2009 during the H1N1 flu pandemic and has since been used to provide information on flu and routine vaccinations.
  • It has now been repurposed to offer coronavirus vaccine information and currently includes the availability of the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines at more than 20,000 locations in several states.
  • The repurposed tool went live this week. It currently does not cover every location in the county, but developers plan to expand it across the country over the coming weeks to include most vaccine providers if the program goes well.

A website backed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is trying to make it easier for Americans to find out where COVID-19 vaccines are available in their area. 

VaccineFinder.org allows users to plug in their zip code to search for COVID-19 vaccine providers near them that may have doses in stock. Vaccine providers report their inventory to the site every 24 hours. The tool was made in partnership with the CDC, Boston Children’s Hospital and Castlight Health. 


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The site was originally developed in 2009 during the H1N1 flu pandemic and has since been used to provide information on flu and routine vaccinations prior to the COVID-19 outbreak. 

It has now been repurposed to offer coronavirus vaccine information and currently includes the availability of the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines at more than 20,000 locations in several states. In most states, the site offers only information on pharmacy and drugstore chains that are receiving vaccines from the federal government, although the tool provides information on hospitals, clinics and public health vaccination sites in Alaska, Indiana, Iowa and Tennessee, according to NPR. 

“We’re trying to create a trusted site and bring some order to all this chaos and confusion around availability,” John Brownstein, a Boston Children’s Hospital researcher who runs the tool, told The New York Times.

While users can’t book vaccine appointments directly through the vaccine finder tool, the website directs them to the appropriate portal where they can register to get vaccinated and find information on local eligibility requirements. 

The repurposed tool went live this week, and developers plan to expand it across the country over the coming weeks to include most vaccine providers if the program goes well, the Times reports. 

According to the CDC, more than 66 million COVID-19 doses have been administered as of Thursday.


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Published on Feb 25, 2021