Hernando County seniors are now also able to sign up for the COVID-19 vaccine, or so they had hoped.

The Hernando County Health Department received more than 10,000 phone calls since they put out the sign in front of their lawn just last week. Now, they’re forced to have to turn residents away until more vaccines can come in because they’re booked up at full capacity.

County Health Officer Robin Napier said, “We’ve had some issues making our appointments but the ones that have been made, people are coming in, they’re getting through the line.”

For many like MaryAnn and Noble Dowling, when they call the health department, this is what they hear: “The health department is experiencing high call volumes regarding COVID-19.”

Dowling told Spectrum Bay News 9’s Katya Guillaume, “We called Thursday morning at 7:45 a.m. and left our telephone number and the message said that they would call us and we did not receive a call back.” 

The health department is working on getting those calls answered. In their 80s, the Dowling’s say this is a big concern for them.

“My concern is more for my husband than myself,” Mrs. Dowling added. “He has diabetes, he has a heart condition and we have someone in our home who has COVID." They’ve been living in a motel since last Wednesday and patiently waiting for their phone call.

Napier added, “If you have not received a message by Friday, just know that you’re going to have to redo your appointment through Eventbrite when we get that up and running.” 

Like other counties in the Bay Area, Eventbrite will be the website where Hernando County residents can log in and make an appointment for the vaccine. As of right now the website is currently not up but they hope to get that up and running by Friday and appointments aren't available for the next upcoming weeks. 

The county is administering 100 vaccines a day right now until they receive another shipment.