By Van Do–Reynoso, MPH, PhD, Director, Public Health
For people without access to the internet or a smart phone, or for those who don’t know how to make a COVID-19 vaccination or testing appointment online, Santa Barbara County has good news.
The County expanded its call center 2-1-1, adding more trained, multi-language operators to assist community members with their vaccine and testing appointment needs. The 2-1-1 call center will also assist callers with other COVID-19 related queries, such as information on current health orders and what is permissible under the state’s tier system.
It can be challenging to understand how and when to schedule a vaccination appointment, even with internet service. Some in our community have expressed confusion and frustration with scheduling online, prompting the County to expand its 2-1-1 call center to better serve people.
It is our goal at Santa Barbara County Public Health to provide everyone in our community with the information and resources they need, especially in this worldwide pandemic.
The 2-1-1 call center also offers services in Spanish, Mixteco, and other different languages so callers can receive the information they need in the language they speak. Trained operators are standing-by to assist our community, so those who require extra help in scheduling appointments may call 2-1-1, Monday through Saturday, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. from their landline, rotary or cellular telephones.
Santa Barbara County’s 2-1-1 has more than 2,000 community programs in its database, and throughout the pandemic has provided thousands of community members with valuable resources.