A mass vaccination center in the southern French city of Nice was forced to close early over the weekend after 58 people turned up for 4,000 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine, a spokesman for the Alpes-Maritimes regional police told CNN.
Doses of the vaccine were offered to people aged over 55 who have jobs with a high Covid-19 risk such as teachers, police, prison guards, but the center was forced to close Saturday only hours after it opened.
The regional police department said they hoped to reopen the center over the next two weeks to allow those who are eligible to show up.
A spokeswoman for the nearby town of Grasse said there were 3,000 teachers in the Alpes-Maritimes region who are over 55 and that some of them had already received their first dose which could explain the poor turnout.
However, Grasse senior official, Anne Frackowiak-Jacobs told French television France 3 people turned around when they heard it was AstraZeneca.
On Monday the French government spokesman Gabriel Attal lamented the closure of the center.
“We need to build up confidence in this vaccine, there’s a lot of work to do for that to happen,” Attal told Europe 1.
He added that last week France vaccinated between 65,000 to 70,000 people per day with AstraZeneca doses.
France’s vaccine rollout has accelerated over the past months with over 12 million people having received at least one dose.
The country aims to vaccinate 20 million people by May 15.