Eire is ready to obtain lower than half the deliveries of Covid-19 vaccines it initially anticipated within the first three months of the yr, as provide points proceed to impede the State’s Covid-19 vaccination programme.
Nearly 1.7 million vaccines can be delivered to Eire within the first quarter of the yr, the high-level taskforce on Covid-19 vaccination forecast in early January.
By the top of February, 520,000 doses had been equipped, and complete deliveries on the finish of March aren’t anticipated to exceed 850,000 doses.
The shortfall is because of slower-than-expected supply of doses by the three firms with authorised vaccines: Pfizer/BioNTech, Moderna and AstraZeneca. Supply dates for shipments of the vaccines have modified on greater than 20 events previously two months.
In the meantime, provides of Johnson & Johnson’s “sport changer” single-shot Covid-19 vaccine aren’t anticipated to reach in Eire till mid-April, a month after regulatory approval is granted.
Sources stated the present expectation can be that when the vaccine is delivered to Eire, the preliminary volumes will probably be low, and can ramp up in the course of the summer season.
The vaccine is predicted to be given regulatory approval by the European Medicines Company this week, and there have been calls from Authorities TDs to hunt supply of the vaccine forward of time, in an effort to allow a speedy rollout of the jab.
The chief government of the Well being Service Govt will on Tuesday inform the Oireachtas well being committee that Eire is among the many high 5 nations within the EU for vaccine rollouts. The service continues “to construct the suitable capability to manage 250,000 vaccines per week, topic to provide”, Paul Reid will say.
Though Eire lags nicely behind the UK for the variety of vaccines administered, it has a higher share of the inhabitants absolutely vaccinated – 3 per cent towards 1.6 per cent, in keeping with Ourworldindata.org.
An additional 437 Covid-19 circumstances had been reported on Monday evening, however no extra deaths.
Public well being officers stated the decline in case numbers has accelerated considerably, although the scenario stays “precarious” as a result of stage of an infection nonetheless within the inhabitants.
There have been no Covid-19 outbreaks in faculties since they reopened late final month, Nationwide Public Well being Emergency Group (Nphet) officers stated, although the complete influence of the change might not be identified till later this week.
The Division of Well being and the HSE on Monday stated the subsequent section of reopening of colleges can proceed as deliberate.
Main college youngsters in third to sixth class and fifth years in post-primary faculties are as a result of return to the classroom subsequent Monday.