Huge turnout for second AstraZeneca shot

09.06.2021 - 11:53
Mynd með færslu
 Mynd: Hólmfríður Dagný Friðjónsd - RÚV
The capital region mass vaccination centre is today administering second and final injections of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine. Queues have been long all day and Heilsugæslan (the capital region healthcare provider) is calling on people not specifically invited to times this morning to stay away until at least 14.00 this afternoon.

The queue for the Laugardalshöll arena in Reykjavík stretches to Suðurlandsbraut, the main road to the south of the park, and the people waiting have been a mix of those with and without specific invites this morning—though all who have had their first injection at least three months ago and are due their second. 

At the time of taking the photograph above, the queue from the hall stretched to Reykjavegur, up to Suðurlandsbraut, and then along the footpath along the main road. At 11.00, the queue had turned back into the park, close to the family park and zoo. Many had already been waiting for an hour, and the waiting times have only increased as the queue has lengthened. 

Parking has been problematic and some people have become chilly while waiting, as the weather is overcast today and people are asked to wear only a T-shirt under their jacket. Those wishing to avoid parking troubles can get to Laugardalshöll on bus numbers 2, 5, 15, and 17. 

“There is so much demand for the second AstraZeneca injection that we don’t have vaccine for everyone. We have to prioritise those who have been allocated appointments and sent invitations,” says Sigríður Dóra Magnúsdóttir, Heilsugæslan medical treatments director. 

People who have been specifically invited today have priority, while those who have had their first injection and are due their second but have not yet received an invite can come after 14.00 this afternoon. Vaccination will carry on until the supply runs out. 

A statement from Heilsugæslan says that the next AstraZeneca vaccination day is two weeks from now and will also be exclusively for people who have already had their first shot. The statement notes that the efficacy of the vaccine grows the longer there is between both injections. It is not a bad thing to wait longer than the prescribed three months. 

AstraZeneca is one of four vaccines being used in Iceland and is the one with the least concrete delivery schedule. For this reason, no new people are currently being given the shot and all supplies are being used for second injections. It has so far been the second-most-used vaccine in Iceland, after Pfizer. 

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