Danny Westneat’s excellent column “How some frustrated COVID-19 vaccine hunters are trying to fix a broken system” [Feb. 17, Health] illustrates the state’s failure to prepare for the arrival of COVID-19 vaccines.

It describes a “whack-a-mole” approach to finding and scheduling vaccination appointments, which has frustrated and irritated state residents, and left them wondering how in the name of COVID, in the land of Microsoft and Amazon, there is not one website that collects appointment opportunities from the more than 300 sites statewide.

State leaders, all the way to the top, knew vaccine was coming to Washington since at least last March. Where were their plans when the FedEx plane landed with vaccine supplies last December? Westneat describes the citizen efforts of George Hu, a former Microsoft developer, Maureen O’Hara, a former Microsoft project manager, and Darren Lim, a sophomore at MIT, who, over a weekend, developed a central site, covidwa.com.

Thank you to our citizen volunteers. Too bad our state leaders failed to take a weekend to develop such a site.

Ron Carter, Kingston