Tokyo eyes online lottery system for youth walk-in vaccination site

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The Tokyo Metropolitan Government said on Monday it was considering setting up an online lottery system for a walk-in COVID-19 vaccination site for young people in the capital, after thousands of people swarmed the site during its first days of opening.

Concerns are growing that the crowds forming around the vaccination site near JR Shibuya Station – as people queue to get tickets for a limited number of vaccines offered each day – could create an environment at high risk for the spread of the virus.

Details on an online lottery system will be announced after they are finalized, with the current system for distributing 9 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. lottery tickets remaining for the time being, the metropolitan government said.

The site, set up following the resurgence of the coronavirus in the capital, aims to vaccinate people between the ages of 16 and 39, who reside in or travel to Tokyo, after infections among people in the age began to spread at a faster rate. rhythm.

The Tokyo Metropolitan Government switched to a lottery system after difficulties on the first day of the program on Friday, when a line began to form early in the morning with people grabbing some 200 vaccination slots provided under the principle first-come, first-served way before check-in was supposed to start.

It was supposed to distribute lottery tickets starting at 9 a.m. Saturday, but started about 40 minutes earlier than planned due to the growing line, which eventually stretched about 1 kilometer, Tokyo officials said.

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