Covid France: How to get a vaccine if you are aged 70-74
All people aged 70-74 years old in France will be able to receive the vaccine at designated centres, at pharmacies or at their GP’s practice from this weekend
Reader question: I am 71 and I read that I can now get a vaccination in France now. How do I organise an appointment? There have been a lot of changes with pharmacies and doctors and it is hard to keep up.
All people aged 70 to 74 years old in France, regardless of their health, will be eligible to be vaccinated against Covid-19 from Saturday (March 27).
This is part of the government’s plan to gradually lower the age bracket of those who can be vaccinated. All people aged over 75 have been eligible for the vaccination since January 18.
From Saturday, people over the age of 70 will be able to get vaccinated at:
- A designated vaccination centre
- By their doctor at their practice
- By a pharmacist at their local pharmacy
- At their place of work by a doctor
Vaccinations being carried out at the centres are being done with either the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine or the Moderna vaccine.
You can book an appointment by going to sante.fr, selecting the department and town you live in and finding your nearest centre.
You can either phone the centre directly with the number given or click to book a rendez-vous online. If you click through to book online, you will be directed to the Doctolib.fr website. This website is partnered with the government and will allow you to book your appointment. Similarly, you can use the websites Maiia.com and KelDoc.com.
The number of appointments available in your area will depend on the number of doses available to the vaccination centres. You may not be able to get an appointment immediately.
You can also get vaccinated at your local pharmacy or by your doctor, both of which are currently using the AstraZeneca vaccine.
You can phone your local pharmacy to see about arranging an appointment or go there in person. Not all pharmacies in France are offering the vaccination and the ones that do have a limited number of doses, so again you may not be able to get an appointment immediately.
It is the same situation for GPs, who receive their doses from pharmacies. You can contact your GP directly to ask about the possibility of being vaccinated there.
Health Minister Olivier Véran this week said that the rollout will speed up significantly in April, “because supplies of the vaccine will rise”.
He also reiterated the government’s goal of having 10 million people vaccinated with at least one dose by mid-April.
You can read our article on whether France will receive enough doses to meet its targets here.
The Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine is set to be the “pillar” of France’s campaign and the main vaccine available in newly created vaccinodromes - large vaccination centres of which 35 are set to open this week.
The Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine will make up 7.7 million of the 12 million total doses set to be delivered to France in April, Le Figaro reported.
An internal survey carried out by pharmacy union the Union syndicale des pharmaciens d’officine found that there are 1.4 million people on a waiting list to receive a vaccination at a pharmacy.
Head of the union, Gilles Bonnefond, said in an interview with Franceinfo that pharmacies are lacking doses but more will be delivered in the coming weeks to help them tackle this waiting list.
This suggests that over 70s will have more luck trying to book vaccination appointments at the designated centres rather than through a pharmacy or their doctor. This may change as the rollout continues.