Sparse turnout for walk-ins

Local | Maisy Mok 23 Sep 2021

Only a small number of people went to get walk-in Covid-19 jabs at community vaccination centers yesterday morning as the new arrangement was extended to all those above 12.

The person overseeing jabs operations at the Tseung Kwan O Sports Centre put the poor initial response to the widening of the age eligibility for walk-in jabs down to people sleeping in on a public holiday after celebrating the Mid-Autumn Festival.

Starting yesterday, same-day jab tickets will be distributed from 7.45am on a first-come, first-served basis this month and next month at 21 SAR community vaccination centers to those aged 12 or above.

Five community vaccination centers provide the Sinovac vaccine for those aged 18 or above and the rest provide BioNTech vaccines for those aged 12 or above.

Prior to yesterday's arrangement, tickets were limited to just students aged 12 or above and those aged 60 or above. As well as five target groups such as medical, catering and school staffers.

Lai Chi Kok Park Sports Centre, which offers BioNTech vaccines, saw less than 10 people getting walk-in jabs as of 10am yesterday.

A man, Wong, arrived at the center at around 8.30am. He praised the new system, saying getting a walk-in jab is more convenient and that he might not have gotten vaccinated yesterday if not for the availability of same-day tickets.

Several people picked up the tickets in the morning at Kwun Chung Sports Centre, which offers Sinovac jabs.

Among them was a construction worker who decided to get vaccinated as he found it troublesome to get regular Covid-19 tests for his work.

Ares Leung Kwok-ling, the CEO of Town Health International Medical Group who operates the TKO Sports Centre community vaccination center, said few people got tickets in the morning because it was a holiday, but added that there have recently been dozens of people turning up every day.

Under the current ticket arrangement, people can collect a ticket by presenting their Hong Kong identity card at a community vaccination center.

The day ended with around 1,080 same-day jab tickets distributed.

Secretary for the Civil Service Patrick Nip Tak-kuen said yesterday that the government will strive to set up vaccination stations at two public hospitals this month for elderly citizens.

The Centre for Health Protection recorded one new imported Covid-19 case yesterday: a fully vaccinated woman who flew in from the Philippines. She had received two doses of the Comirnaty vaccine.



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