Political considerations
States are feeling tremendous pressure from the public, who are understandably eager to get vaccinated. At the same time, they are in the spotlight from above (e.g. the Governor). The Department of Health (DOH) is an agency with permanent civil service staff, whose discretion may be limited by legislation. So, they must receive permissions from various groups within and without the agency to deploy a VAF.
States are not accustomed to receiving pro-bono services, such as those from USDR. Most will want to follow their typical vendor process, which is acceptable, but it must be done quickly to address the perishable need for appointment finders. A VAF for internal use usually requires far fewer permissions and stakeholder sign-offs, and can be quickly used to stress-test the system for later external use.
For example, New Jersey decided to pilot its appointment finder with the state’s call center first. After the tool was built, New Jersey’s personnel leveraged it within 2 days to immediately schedule appointments for residents. Their call center agents were also able to provide valuable feedback to improve the VAF going forward, but at far lower complexity than a public launch. You can jump to New Jersey's success story directly below.
Last modified 8mo ago
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