Appointment slots for the vaccine were booked solid in Nicosia after midnight, with other districts quickly following suit as Cypriots rush to the state’s vaccine portal to reserve their shot.
Local media said the vaccine portal operated by the government was booked solid as citizens Sunday night, just after midnight, logged on to reserve an appointment.
A total of 3690 vaccines appointments were opened to the public minutes after midnight, with reports saying Nicosia was booked solid soon after, while Larnaca and Limassol reached their maximum limits by late Monday morning.
Officials said the vaccine portal would remain closed until new vaccines are delivered and new appointment slots announced by the government
Vaccine appointments are made through stages, depending on eligibility criteria as well as availability of the shots as they are being delivered to the island on a weekly basis.
The second stage, which still had some slots left on Monday in Paphos, Polis Chrysochous, and Famagusta, addresses vaccination needs of the elderly above 80 years old, with the inoculations set to be administered between 18 and 22 December.
Officials said the vaccine portal would remain closed until new vaccines are delivered and new appointment slots announced by the government.
But critics cried foul on Monday morning, with reports on state radio saying there were suspicions over some people being told to reserve an appointment as early as one minute after midnight while others had no idea.
It was also reported that vaccine appointments were being made through GESY portal, the state’s newly-established healthcare network, meaning that both the vaccine recipient, as well as the person who is assisting an elderly patient, would need to have a GESY account.
Government officials have also said that individuals who are not registered with GESY but wish to be vaccinated under the state's National Vaccinations Plan for COVID-19 can still apply to the Health Ministry to get the shot by filling out a form.
A total of 6035 vaccinations have taken place in the Republic of Cyprus since 27 December 2020, when the government embarked on an ambitious plan to vaccinate up to 75% of the population by summer.