Follow Bonnie and Bob Sealy’s instructions. They registered online to be vaccinated, filled out all forms and waited for their time.
Bob, 83, has cancer and has a higher priority than his wife, so he was among the 11,500 seniors chosen to be vaccinated at state-run events this weekend in Delaware and Georgetown.
The Sileys received a response from the state that Bob had approved an appointment, and they set an appointment from 11 to 11:30 a.m. Saturday at the Delaware City Auto Division.
They left their home in the suburb of Wilmington at 10:15 AM on Saturday and came back before 2 PM
They never come close to entering DMV grounds near where Route 1 meets Route 72 and Wrangel Hill Road.
“It was a nightmare,” said Bonnie, 80.
She said they moved about 150 feet while waiting for over an hour and a half. With no idea how long it would take to approach DMV, they decided to leave.
“Thank God we’re derailed,” said Bonnie. “I don’t know what will happen.”
Bonnie said she spoke with another friend who had a slot between 11:30 a.m. and noon, and also left before the vaccination.
So did Evan Winslow’s grandfather.
Winslow said his father and grandfather also had an appointment from 11:30 to noon. He said they heard from another person who was scheduled for 9 a.m. and didn’t get to the front of class until 1:30 p.m.
Not sure how long it would take to get to the front, they decided to leave, although they came back later.
In a Facebook post after 2 p.m., the Department of Health and Social Services said: “If you have an appointment, you will receive a vaccine today, so please stay in line if you can. We apologize for the delay caused by technical issues.”
“For those who have Saturday and Sunday appointments, it is important that you fill in the medical history information in the VAMS account that I created so that it is not added to the vaccination event. Please use the username and password that you have created,” said Public Health Department spokesperson Jane Priestel in an email You set them up to schedule an appointment to return to VAMS and add medical record information prior to your arrival at the vaccination event. “
The state planned to vaccinate 11,500 seniors and 2,000 healthcare workers in Phase 1A this weekend in Delaware and Georgetown. Vaccinations were by appointment only. Traffic near the Georgetown DMV was congested at Route 113 and North Bedford Street / Shortly Road, as long lines of people waited.
A Delaware Department of Transportation worker said the Georgetown facility could hold about 400 vehicles in DMV ownership. People at that facility were reporting three-hour wait times on Facebook.
Tens of thousands of Delawareans in Stage 1B Registered this week to be vaccinated Through the state’s Internet system. From that group, 11,500 were selected on a priority basis for this weekend’s event. On Friday, 500 people They were vaccinated in Delaware DMV and thousands more are expected to be vaccinated on Saturday and Sunday at both sites.
For some, the long wait was to be expected.
Elizabeth Monaghan, a former emergency medicine nurse, said she and her husband had been waiting for a long day to receive their vaccinations at the Georgetown site.
“We have friends like us in many other states who are not hoping to get a vaccine soon,” she wrote in an email.
Monaghan said that while “there is always room for improvement”, the people should be applauded – the volunteers, public health workers and first responders.
“Finally in the waiting area for 15 minutes to wait for any immediate, unexpected reaction … We looked at each other and thankful that we were lucky to have reached this point after 10 long months,” she said.
“What we must remember is that we are all in this mess together. Patience and understanding are required for the tasks at hand. Combined with kindness – deep breaths also help – it will make us all go through this.”
Monaghan said the round-trip time was about three hours.
Others in Delaware faced longer waiting times.
Like the Sileys, another Hockessin couple left their home around 10 am for their 11 am appointment. The couple, who did not want to be named, spoke to Delaware Online / The News Journal over the cell phone around 3 p.m. and said that the car’s odometer had not yet reached 15 miles. They were on Route 1 south and stayed in traffic for five hours.
“I’ve never seen traffic like this in Delaware,” said the 77-year-old. “It’s too bad.”
But unlike the Sileys, the couple said they would wait for him.
The man said, “We need these vaccinations,” because his wife suffers from basic health problems.
They also pre-registered online and have received confirmations of appointments.
“We did everything right,” said the 73-year-old woman.
The couple called the police in an attempt to control the traffic. They were concerned that some of the elderly could not wait in long lines without accessing the bathroom or food.
The photo gallery below is taken from the Friday evening event. The story continues after
They later contacted The News Journal after they were vaccinated at 5:15 pm, seven hours after they had left the Hokycin home. Once inside the DMV complex, they said it was more organized.
“We heard these horror shops from Florida, but we never thought we’d get that kind of thing in Delaware,” the man said.
What’s worse, Bonnie Sealy said, people who get vaccinated this weekend should get a second injection within weeks.
“Would you go back to this line like this?”
After leaving without her husband getting an injection, she said they would try to get the vaccination through a pharmacy instead.
She said, “I am very disappointed and disappointed.”
Shannon Marvel McConaut contributed to writing this story.
Contact Jeff Neiburg at [email protected] Follow him on Twitter @Jeff_Neiburg.