Mary welcomes the Government announcement that Covid19 Vaccine strategy is being urgently rolled out for free and to those most at risk first, BUT we must all continue to limit our contacts, wash our hands, keep our distance and cover our face so we can save lives and livelihoods. Click HERE for strategy.
The strategy prioritises those over the age of 65 living in long-term care facilities, frontline healthcare workers who are in direct patient contact and those aged 70 and over.
The Minister also announced that there should be no barrier to people accessing a vaccine, and therefore the vaccine programme will be available free of charge to everyone in Ireland.
Though Ireland has secured large number of doses of candidate vaccines, the initial availability will be limited if authorised for use, therefore a prioritisation strategy had to be developed.
The COVID-19 Vaccine Allocation Strategy prioritises groups based on (1) ethical principles and (2) epidemiological considerations, and takes account of the current distinctive characteristics of the COVID-19 disease, its modes of transmission, the groups and individuals most susceptible to infection and what is currently known about the candidate vaccines. The Strategy will evolve and adapt with more detailed information on the vaccines and their effectiveness.
The Minister advised that the continued adherence to public health measures is critical to keeping the disease at bay. We will still need to protect each other by continuing to wash our hands, cover our sneezes, avoid crowded places, physically distance, and wear face coverings.