All Apple users can now find a vaccination site closest to them, thanks to an announcement by the tech giant on Tuesday wherein the company informed that Apple Maps has been updated with vaccine locations from VaccineFinder, a site run by Boston Children’s Hospital that provides information on vaccine eligibility and availability. People can search for nearby vaccination sites in Apple Maps or ask Siri, “Where can I get a COVID vaccination?”
With over 20,000 locations now listed on the App, and many more to be added in the coming weeks, each vaccine site listing in Apple Maps includes the operating hours and contact information for the site, with a link to the provider’s website to find vaccine availability and make an appointment.
Along with the data provided by VaccineFinder, healthcare providers, labs, or other businesses can submit information on COVID-19 testing or vaccination locations on the Apple Business Register page. Once validated, Apple may display information about the testing or vaccination locations to people using Apple services such as Apple Maps.
Meanwhile, in its announcement of the new feature, Apple also made it a point to inform readers of the various other COVID-related features they may find on their devices including Covid-19 testing sites, local business updates, and Siri’s knowledge about the pandemic.
Facebook, on the other hand, announced on Monday, that will be adding VaccineFinder information to its COVID Information Center, showing people when and where they can get vaccinated and providing links to make appointments. The COVID Information Center will also be expanding to Instagram, and the company is working on expanding government and health authority WhatsApp chatbots to help people register for vaccines. Zuckerberg announced in a Facebook post early Monday that the social media giant is launching a tool in its COVID Information Center that shows “when and where you can get vaccinated, and gives you a link to make an appointment.”
Google has also volunteered to offer more ways to find information about vaccination with a new announcement on Tuesday, wherein people can use Business Messages in Google Maps and Google search to contact local pharmacies owned by Albertsons Companies — including Safeway, Jewel-Osco, Vons, Albertsons, Acme, Shaw’s, and Tom Thumb — with questions about vaccine eligibility, availability, and appointment booking.