From now on, you can search directly on Apple Maps where the closest COVID-19 vaccination facility is. This is done by clicking on the Search bar in Apple Maps and selecting “COVID-19 vaccines” in the Find Nearby menu. You can also access the service by asking Siri — “Where can I get a COVID vaccination?” Both will work due to the new partnership between Apple and VaccineFinder.Apple’s new service is using the database of VaccineFinder and will display placecards for each vaccine site. These cards will include operating hours, address, phone numbers, and link to the centers’ webpages. Apple states that initially, the database includes more than 20 000 locations.
VaccineFinder is a service provided by Boston’s Children’s Hospital and it is made to collect viable, updated information on the availability of vaccines at hospitals, centers, and pharmacies around the US. Furthermore, healthcare providers, labs, and other businesses can submit information concerning the pandemic which can later be shown on Apple Maps. This is done through the Apple Business Register page. Since April 2020, Apple has been providing COVID-19 testing locations information in the following countries: Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Japan, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Portugal, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, and the United States of America.
The local businesses can also update their placecards on Apple Maps with information like shopping hours. In addition to finding the nearest testing location and vaccination center, you can also receive information on nearby restaurants and dining options through Siri. Apple has designed short news podcasts concerning the pandemic — Siri Audio Briefs. Apple has also integrated sources from the CDC — and these are available also on Siri when you ask — “How do I know if I have coronavirus?”