Vaccination center takes anti-heat measures

A large-scale coronavirus vaccination center in Tokyo has been equipped with mist machines to help visitors cope with the heat while waiting.

Six mist machines were installed around reception and waiting areas at the site on Tuesday when the temperature rose above 31 degrees Celsius in central Tokyo for the first time this year.

The vaccination center, set up by the government and operated by the Defense Ministry, has had nearly 10,000 people visit every day.

Inoculations are conducted in a building, where big fans have been installed in addition to air conditioners. The number of fans there was 38 when the center opened last month but it has now been increased to 50.

A 79-year-old woman from one of the neighboring prefectures, Chiba, said she chose cool areas to walk to the vaccination center from the nearest train station. She said she did not have to wait too long before having a jab after arrival at the center, but she advised it is better for elderly visitors to prepare themselves for the hot weather.

The center's vaccination team chief is medical officer, Ground Self-Defense Force Colonel Kawano Shuichi. He said he will take flexible responses to help protect visitors from the heat, including increasing the number of receptionists, in order to prevent long lines being formed outside.

He said his team will do all it can to continue achieving a target of inoculating 10,000 people a day.

The government has set up another large vaccination center run by the Defense Ministry in Osaka.

The two centers combined are aiming to vaccinate 15,000 people daily.