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21 Jan 2022

Walk-in vaccination centres will be available for healthcare workers and over 60's - HSE chief

Walk-in vaccination centres will be available for healthcare workers and over 60's - HSE chief

Walk-in vaccination centres will be available for healthcare workers and over 60's - HSE chief

Last week, 200,000 vaccines were administrated, 630,000 boosters distributed, and 76,000 third doses for those who are immune-compromised, according to HSE chief Paul Reid. 

Starting from next week, the medically vulnerable group will start to receive appointments from this weekend which equates to more than 470,000 people.

Over 50's will begin getting their booster vaccine from mid-December.

Speaking on RTE's Morning Ireland, the HSE chief said they are working across the different groups and cohorts recommended by NIAC and long-term care facilities.

He said 85% of over 80's were complete, 2/3 of 70-79 complete, and 60-69s are advancing quickly as more people are becoming eligible.

More than 60% of Healthcare workers have received their third dose of the vaccine, according to Mr. Reid.  

He said the model is parallel working through agreed groups that have come based on eligibility with a combination of appointment-driven vaccination centres and specific centres offering walk-in facilities at specific times for those who are eligible. 

Mr. Reid said they hope to focus on 60-69-year-olds and healthcare workers at the walk-in vaccination clinics.

"If you are in that age bracket, and if you are 5 months from your second vaccine you are eligible." he said.

The HSE welcomes the decision by the EMA on vaccines for children and it is under consideration by NIAC, and will be a decision for government recommendation.

"From our perspective, we are not waiting on that, we are working on the delivery schedule from the suppliers of the vaccine, and all indications are it will be the end of December."

The HSE chief hopes to set up a process that engages with parents on their view on what would be important for them when bringing children for a vaccine and hopes to ensure it will be a 'safe and pleasant enviroment'

He said they will look at all options for the delivery of a vaccine to children, and to set it up in an 'efficient' way when clearance is given to rolling out the vaccine. 

Paul Reid said he understands the frustration felt about the delay of PCR testing and he has been communicating on behalf of the HSE to 'explain the reality of the situation'.

15,000 tests in the community per day were scaled up to 20,000 and in the last week, it has reached 26,000 PCR tests in the community. 

"We are having high positivity rates of transmission levels in the community between 15-19%.

"It is not infinite the resources we can put into this, we are prioritising those clinically referred through GP clinical practice and symptomatic close contacts." added Mr. Reid. 

The HSE chief advised everyone to isolate if symptomatic and it is key to continue to isolate 48 hours after your symptoms desolate.

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