Japan’s state-run COVID-19 vaccination centers will lower the minimum age for inoculation from 18 years old to 16 years old
Japan’s state-run COVID-19 vaccination centers will lower the minimum age for inoculation from 18 years old to 16 years old or younger, today.
In recent weeks, cases of the Delta variant among young people in the country have risen dramatically. The Tokyo and Osaka vaccination centers recently announced plans to reserve 500 and 250 slots per day, respectively, for people aged 16 to 18, with reservations for these spots opening this week. The centers were previously scheduled to close at the end of September but have been renewed through November to help deal with the surging cases among Japanese youth.
Expect the lower minimum age to help increase vaccinations among Japan’s youth and prevent the rapid spread of the Delta variant. There does not seem to be significant vaccine hesitancy among the country’s youth, rather logistical challenges including long lines at centers and inability to make reservations that prevent many from getting vaccinated. A stronger emphasis on resolving these challenges through this initiative and others that help streamline the process will likely prove to be crucial to Japan’s ability to contain the virus. The government may also consider mandating proof of vaccination for public events in the coming weeks.
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