TYLER, Texas (KETK) – Health authorities are encouraging the public to be patient with the rollout of the COVID-19 vaccine.

George Roberts, CEO of NET Health, and Paul McGaha, Smith County Health Authority, provided information about the vaccination process during a meeting of Smith County commissioners.

Both acknowledged that some don’t understand how to sign up to get shots and are showing up at clinics only to be turned away. Others have complained that when they go online, messages indicate that the next clinic is full.

The vaccine is now available to healthcare workers, first responders, those over 65 and those with chronic illnesses.

Most vaccines are being administered at designated “hubs” across the state. In Smith County the hubs are NET Health and UT Health Science Center in Tyler.

Information on how to get on a waiting list to receive a vaccination through NET Health is available at https://www.nethealthcovid19.org/vaccine-updates

Information about the distribution through UT Health Science Center in Tyler are available at https://uthealtheasttexas.com/coronavirus

In Gregg County, CHRISTUS Good Shepherd has been designated a hub.

Information about the distribution at Christus is available at https://www.christushealth.org/coronavirus

Reservations for all three hubs are made by using a computer or cell phone to access the electronic reservation system.

In some cases, clinics are full and no reservations are being taken.

On Tuesday, the information on the UT Health East Texas website said: All COVID-19 vaccine appointments are full at this time. Please check UTHealthEastTexas.com/coronavirus and monitor area media outlets for future availability.”

All appointments for the upcoming CHRISTUS Good Shepherd Vaccination Hub site have been filled through the first four weekends, said information from Christus. The State is scheduled to replenish vaccine supply, and additional appointments will be added next Friday, Feb. 5.

Smith County Commissioners raised concern that some people, especially the elderly, may not have access to a computer or cell phone.

For some, the registration process is causing a lot of “frustration,” McGaha said.

NET Health could give more shots if it had more vaccines, Roberts said.

McGaha said it is likely more vaccines will be approved in the coming weeks and the speed at which shot will be administered will quicken.

Most recent numbers show that 252 people are being treated for COVID-19 in area hospitals and that there remains “substantial spread” of the virus in Smith, Gregg, Wood, Rains and Van Zandt counties.

“We may be tired of the virus but the virus isn’t tired of us yet,” Roberts said.

He encouraged people to continue to wear a mask, frequently wash their hands and practice social distancing.