Based on our successful approach in California, which combines phone calls to vaccination sites to web scraping and manual data collection from official sources, Vaccinate the States has laid the groundwork to collect all the vaccine sites in a single, searchable map.

We need three major types of help: research, phone calls, and writing code.

How to get started doing research

We’ve found that federal and state vaccination appointment hubs aren’t designed to capture the full range of community-based vaccination clinics. Especially when they’re walk-in only, or run through a community partner organization—which is more and more common as availability increases—vaccination sites may only be surfaced at the county level, and even then, sometimes only in infrequent PDF updates or on a county Facebook page. But these vaccine clinics are often among the only options in underserved communities that have less coverage by pharmacies, and are a critical part of our national vaccination infrastructure.

To make sure we get as many as we can on our map, we have a special research team: web bankers. They scour government websites, social media pages, and more, to find new sources of vaccination site information for either our scrapers or our manual entry team to add to the map.

Web banking is a great fit for people with excellent Googling skills and unpredictable or unconventional schedules. If you have sporadic pockets of time late, or are unable to contribute to making phone calls during normal business hours, web banking may be a great fit.

Fill out this form to let us know you’re interested.

How to get started making phone calls

Phone calls are at the heart of what we do at Vaccinate The States. Although we now are able to directly pull information from national sources like VaccineFinder, which decreases the total number of locations we need to call, there’s still a long-tail of vaccination sites about which reliable information is not readily available on the internet or via data sharing agreements. That’s where our phone banking team comes in.

We’ve built a custom app that makes it easy to know exactly who to call, and what to say. We provide upfront training, and then guide callers through a step-by-step process to capture the most important information to feed our map. It’s also (maybe surprisingly) a lot of fun!

Fill out this form to let us know you’re interested.

How to get started writing code

We’ve built a flexible and powerful infrastructure to store and serve vaccination site information. Now, we need help scraping, parsing, and normalizing data from a wide range of sources. To that end, we’re opening up our pipeline for broader contributions.

At a high level, here’s what you can expect to help with in each phase:

Scraping: Downloading data from a website into a local file

Parsing: Translating the downloaded data into a json file

Normalizing: Mapping the json file to our standard format.

We’ve published our full set of needs as GitHub issues, and will continue to add more over the coming week.

To get started, first visit our contribution instructions for more context on our pipeline and how we work.

Then, take a look at the open issues on Github. If you see something you like, comment on the issue—we'll assign it to you when we see the comment. If you want to add something we don't have an issue for, that's fine! You can open a new issue—but we’d appreciate if you focused on already open issues first. Once you’re done with your contribution, you can open a PR.