Oireachtas Joint and Select Committees

Friday, 29 January 2021

Joint Oireachtas Committee on Health

Covid-19 Vaccination Programme: Update

Mr. David Walsh:

I do not have a figure for the percentage of GPs vaccinated, but they have been vaccinated through a number of channels, as have their practice nurses. I will try to draw that information together. There will be another sweep to pick up GPs and practice nurses who have not yet been vaccinated.

It is clearly critical as they become vaccinators for the third cohort.

Regarding chartered physiotherapists, it depends on the setting that they are working in and their level of exposure. They could be priority healthcare workers. We have engaged with a number of the professional bodies about their members, especially those in private practice who may feel excluded. If a chartered physiotherapist is working in an environment where he or she is exposed to Covid-19, he or she is the same as anyone else working in a hospital or other healthcare environment and needs to access the vaccine in line with peers with a similar risk of exposure. I am happy to clarify that.

I ask Dr. Jessop to talk about the vaccine-specific issues that were raised.


maeve Doyle
Posted on 1 Feb 2021 5:32 pm (Report this comment)

Hello,My husband is a GP.he was first alerted that he needed to register on a GP portal some weeks ago, in order to be eligible for the vaccine.He did as instructed only to discover that the portal crashed some 6 hours later.
Subsequently ,he was requested to indicate whether he wished to be vaccinated in a hospital setting or in the community.Subsequently ,he and his GP partners received an e mail alerting them to the fact that they may receive an e mail that they had an appointment to be vaccinated and to be ready to travel to Galway ,Cork or St Mary's Hospital in the Phoenix Park the following day.Both of his GP colleagues and the 2 practice nurses received e mails and got their vaccines the next day.He did not.
I was made aware that there were only 1400 vaccines for 4000 GP practices. Therefore it is quite clear that a significant number of GPS and their practice numbers would not be receiving the vaccine at this first stage.
I understand that he was registered on both the Beaumont Hospital site and on the HSE site for vaccination.
2 days after this ,he was contacted by a GP colleague,who had been vaccinated in the local nursing home that he provides a service to.There were left over vaccines and his colleague was asked who did he know might benefit from thes.He suggested my husband.
At this stage ,my husband has had one dose of the vaccine and has no idea when he will receive his second dose of the vaccine.
I contrast this to my own experience in Tallaght University Hospital where I received constant accurate communication on the vaccination,registerd with Swift Q ,and am in the lucky position of having received the 2 doses of the vaccine.
My question relates to the variability of the dispersal systems within the country,the oversight and governance of same and who is accountable at local ,regional and national level for ensuring the precious vaccinations get to those they are meant for no matter what the postcode is.
I would be grateful for your earliest reply.Maeve

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