Friday, 3 December 2021
Ceisteanna Eile - Other Questions
I will respond first to the Deputy's second point, which was what the level of demand is like. As the Minister of State, Deputy Butler, was just saying to me, the demand in the nursing homes has been huge. There has been no drop-off. We saw over the weekend very long queues. Obviously, we do not want anyone waiting many hours for a booster, particularly in the winter, but it is at least indicative that there is a very high demand, and we have seen it grow. In fact, we have seen another big wave of interest since we found out about the latest variant. The good news is that there is strong demand and we are seeing high take-up levels, as I said, for the initial groups who have had that little bit longer, namely people in nursing homes, those in other long-term residential care, the immunocompromised and those aged over 80.
The Deputy's second question related to recruitment, which is one of the issues we are focusing on a lot on the task force. We had a great many people in the vaccine centres. There was a period between broadly the end of the vaccine programme and the start of the booster programme when we could not leave very large numbers of people with nothing to do, so many were redeployed back into-----