In the coming weeks, Google will begin implementing a vaccine locator service on its platforms for Texans to use, including appointment details, clinic hours and more.
The rollout comes as part of a $150 million plan announced by Google in late January for vaccine education and accessibility. Included in this plan are vaccination site location services for Texas, Arizona, Louisiana and Mississippi, as well as plans to open vaccination sites as needed.
“Searches for ‘vaccines near me’ have increased 5x since the beginning of the year and we want to make sure we’re providing locally relevant answers,” Google CEO Sundar Pichai said in a release.
Information for the vaccination locator will be pulled from government agencies, pharmacies and VaccineFinder.org to provide users with detailed assistance.
The plan also includes grants distributed to public health agencies and organizations assisting marginalized individuals with vaccine access.
You can read the full release here. This does seem like the simplest answer to the problem, but it did need for there to be consistent data out there about where to find vaccines in the first place. Now you won’t have to know where to look for that, you can just search as you normally do. Or at least you will in the coming weeks. That should help a lot.