Many Torontonians faced long virtual queues to book a vaccine appointment Monday morning as the province expanded second dose eligibility to people living in Delta variant hotspot regions.
People expressed frustration online at the hours-long wait. Some were even kicked out of the virtual waiting room and had to start the process all over again.
Went through the Ontario site to book a second dose. Couldn’t get one after waiting an hour. Got booted and now I’m in queue again.
My shock level that Ontario government clusterfucked this one too is zero.#onpoli
— Smartassicus (@Smartassicus) June 14, 2021
— soraya roberts (@sorayaroberts) June 14, 2021
— Sarah (@sarahU277) June 14, 2021
Daily Hive spoke to one person who had more than 136,000 people in front of her. She opted to book a second dose of AstraZeneca at a pharmacy instead of waiting for an mRNA shot.
Toronto released 60,000 more appointments at 8 am on Monday, but those slots didn’t appear to be enough to meet the demand for second doses.
Between 8 am and 11 am Monday morning, more than 62,000 new appointments were booked at City-run mass immunization clinics. The mass clinics are now 99% booked, a City of Toronto spokesperson told Daily Hive.
“Anyone looking for an appointment is asked to be patient and to continue checking the booking system for openings from cancellations.”
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On June 14, Ontario expanded second-dose eligibility to all residents within health regions considered hotspots for the more transmissible Delta variant. The variant drove a deadly resurgence of COVID-19 in India, and research from the UK suggests it could pass from person to person up to 50% more easily than the Alpha variant.
“The provincial booking system may have been experiencing delays this morning because of surging demand for newly-opened appointments from expanded eligibility groups,” the Toronto spokesperson said.
Residents in these health regions became eligible to book a second dose Monday:
Although mass immunization clinics are essentially full, doses can still be booked via participating pharmacies or Toronto residents can line up for at a pop-up clinic.