Mississauga COVID-19 vaccine clinic scam scare blamed on premature website launch


Published December 22, 2021 at 11:40 am

Confusion and concerns about a COVID-19 vaccination scam in Mississauga are being blamed on the early launch of an online booking portal for an upcoming mass vaccination clinic.

On Wednesday morning, Mississauga Coun. Carolyn Parrish Tweeted a warning about what she called a “scam Covid vaccine site” booking appointments for a reportedly non-existent clinic at the International Centre on Airport Rd.

In the now-deleted Tweet, Parrish said the website was collecting personal information “for nefarious purposes,” and there was “no clinic there today.”

But the website was in fact a legitimate booking portal for an upcoming clinic run by Switch Health, and officials say the portal went live ahead of schedule.

“The website was launched in error by Switch Health and has since been removed,” a spokesperson for the ministry told insauga.com.

The province said it is working with Switch Health to launch the new mass vaccination clinic, which will be able to accommodate as many as 20,000 vaccinations a day.

Some people were able to book appointments through the website, which Switch “went live inadvertently.”

This capture of a now-deleted Tweet by Mississauga. Coun. Carolyn Parrish claimed a booknig website for an up-coming mass vaccination clinic was “a scam Covid vaccine site.”

Future appointments at the up-coming International Centre Clinic will be made through the province’s online vaccine booking system, but Switch said all appointments that were scheduled via the premature website launch “will be honoured.”

Dr. Lawrence Loh, Peel’s medical officer of health, said at a press conference in Brampton on Wednesday that Peel Public Health (PPH) was aware of website but urged Peel residents to book through the provincial vaccination portal.

In a series of Tweets, Parrish said PPH was not informed about the upcoming clinic.

Peel Public Health said it is aware of the premature website launch and said the province will release more details on the upcoming clinic as they become available.

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