Tokyo apologises for Covid-19 vaccine rollout confusion

Tokyo apologises for Covid-19 vaccine rollout confusion

Health authorities on Saturday switched to a reservation system instead of first come, first served

A man receives the Moderna coronavirus vaccine at the Tokyo Metropolitan Government building in Tokyo. Credit: Reuters Photo

Japan's Tokyo city hall has apologised for “confusion” amid its vaccination rollout targeting young people, after crowds looking to get the shot were turned away from a facility in the Shibuya district.

Health authorities on Saturday switched to a reservation system instead of first come, first served. But more than 2,200 people showed up to get vaccine appointment vouchers, some waiting in line since dawn, and 354 were selected by lottery to receive shots, Japanese media reported.

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Inoculations for those ages 16 through 39 began Friday.

Japan, which has one of the slowest Covid-19 vaccine rollouts in the developed world, has prioritised giving shots to elderly people and then gradually working its way down by age group.

The latest development appears to counter critics who had suggested young people wouldn't be interested in getting vaccinated.

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