Amid the second wave of a novel coronavirus, India has started vaccination for phase 3 which comprises people from 18 – 44 age groups. Prior to its beginning, various people confronted issues while registering on CoWIN portal, Aarogya Setu application as they both crashed considering large numbers of people looking for registration which began on April 28. Many people registered but didn’t get a slot for it. To avoid all the hustle for knowing vaccination centres and registering the details, WhatsApp has associated with the Indian government on improving the process for vaccination. Using Mygov WhatsApp chatbot (API-based helplines connected with the country’s biggest messaging platform), now you can look for the nearest vaccination centre in your area.
The messaging app introduced this feature to facilitate the whole vaccination process. The information was shared by @mygovindia handle which stated that one can find the nearest vaccination centre through the Mygov corona helpdesk chat box by simply typing ‘Namaste’ at 9013151515 on WhatsApp. It added, “Prepare, don’t panic.”
Showing the concern for the current situation in India, WhatsApp head Will Cathcart quoted the tweet of @mygovindia and said, “I am thinking of our friends in India going through such a difficult time with COVID and grateful for all the work people are doing to help one another. We’re working with health partners to support helplines on WA like this one from @mygovindia.”
The chatbot was initiated early last year as the world confronted the first wave of the Covid-19 pandemic. Now, as the situation gets grim, the Facebook-owned chat application has added to its functions, which comprises details on the nearest Covid-19 vaccination centres in your area.
Following are the steps to check the nearest vaccination centres on WhatsApp
- Save the official Government of India’s Corona helpdesk number +91 9013151515 in
your contact list.
- Begin a conversation with the number on WhatsApp by simply sending any of three
words: Hi, Hello or Namaste.
- You will be sent an automated response. The message will consist of emergency contacts, a link to the Aarogya Setu app, as well as a range of questions that you could have.
- Revert with your choice on the chat, and you will be instructed further. The vaccination centre and its other related information is option 1 as of now.
- Now, to select “COVID vaccination centres and authentic Information”, send “1” to the MyGov Corona Helpdesk. It will present you with another list of services. The first service will be called “COVID Vaccination – Centres Related Information,” which is the one you will have to select next.
- Send “1” once again to the MyGov Corona Helpdesk to select “COVID Vaccination – Centres Related Information.” The WhatsApp chatbot will now seek your request to enter the PIN code of your location.
- Send your PIN code of the area to MyGov Corona Helpdesk. For instance, if your PIN code is 500098, send “500098” to the WhatsApp chatbot. The MyGov Corona Helpdesk will now present you with the list of vaccination centres in your area if there are any.
It will send you the link from where you can register yourself for the vaccination and book an available slot for the COVID-19 vaccination.
It’s also important to learn that there is a slight lag of up to 1 minute in getting the automated responses from the application. So one should not withdraw from the conversation if he/she does not get a response at that time only.
The only relief from coronavirus is by getting vaccinated timely and taking both doses of it. One of the easier ways now has become whats app besides CoWIN portal, Aarogya Setu application.