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Race for COVID shot after Macron address freezes bookin...

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Race for COVID shot after Macron address freezes booking platform

French president Emmanuel Macron. (Photo: Lisi Niesner/Bloomberg)
By Reuters
12 Jul 2021 0

PARIS, July 12 (Reuters) - French online medical booking site Doctolib temporarily froze as thousands of citizens scrambled to book COVID-19 shots after President Emmanuel Macron said a 'health pass' would be needed to go to bars and restaurants from August.

 

Minutes after Macron’s national address, users of Doctolib’s website and mobile phone app received an message advising that due to the large number of connections they would have to keep their browser open until the site could process their request.

At around 2040 CET, only 10 minutes after the president finished speaking, the site’s estimated waiting time was over 20 minutes.

Macron on Monday said COVID-19 jabs would be mandatory for France’s health workers and that anyone wanting to go to the cinema or a restaurant, or travel long-distance by train, would have to show a vaccination certificate or negative test result.

Moreover, the state will stop paying for tests for French citizens from the Autumn unless a prescription is provided, he said.

Doctolib is the biggest of several online sites through which people can book vaccine appointments.

(Reporting by Ingrid Melander and Gwenaelle Barzic; Writing by Geert De Clercq; Editing by Richard Lough)

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