Beaumont triples server capacity to handle COVID-19 vaccine scheduling rush – Detroit Free Press

Kristen Jordan Shamus   | Detroit Free Press

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Beaumont Health says it tripled the capacity of its computer servers over the weekend so it can better handle the thousands of patients who all tried to register at once Friday for COVID-19 vaccines.

The crush caused the health system’s myBeaumontChart patient portal, that serves about 1 million Beaumont patients, to crash Friday morning. 

“In the health care information technology space, having thousands of patients trying to register at once is unprecedented and our servers were maxed out,” said Beaumont Health Chief Information Officer Hans Keil in a news release.

“It’s similar to what happens when people try to purchase concert tickets as soon as they go on sale and everyone cannot get through at the same time. I’m proud we more than tripled our capacity so quickly. We are rapidly working to add even more.”

The health system — Michigan’s largest with eight hospitals and 38,000 employees — announced last week it would begin vaccinating patients ages 65 years old or older as soon as Monday as part of the state’s expansion of COVID-19 vaccine eligibility to include senior citizens, teachers, child care workers and law enforcement officers.  

More: Beaumont website crashes as people flood system for COVID-19 vaccine

More: Michigan hospitals take lead in distributing COVID-19 vaccine to seniors: What to know

In a typical day, Beaumont processes about 900 new myBeaumontChart accounts. On Friday, nearly 9,000 patients activated their accounts, but thousands of others could not access the website.

At one point, the health system reported that more than 25,000 users simultaneously attempted to register for myBeaumontChart.

“We are thrilled to see this kind of interest in the vaccine. Our staff will continue to monitor our systems and expand capacity as needed. The vaccine is our ticket out of this pandemic, and our Beaumont team will do whatever we can to get as many people vaccinated as possible,” Keil said.

Beaumont will email invitations to patients in the coming weeks based on vaccine availability and the state’s criteria for who is eligible to be vaccinated.

Right now, the health system can vaccinate more than 3,200 people per day at the Beaumont Service Center in Southfield. 

A detailed, regularly updated, website with Frequently Asked Questions about the vaccine is available here: https://www.beaumont.org/covid-vaccine.

Contact Kristen Shamus: kshamus@freepress.com. Follow her on Twitter @kristenshamus. 

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Beaumont triples server capacity to handle COVID-19 vaccine scheduling rush – Detroit Free Press

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