Written answers

Thursday, 18 February 2021

Department of Health

Vaccination Programme

Photo of Róisín ShortallRóisín Shortall (Dublin North West, Social Democrats)
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309. To ask the Minister for Health if the classification of key workers in the vaccine allocation plan has been decided; if this group will include early years professionals; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9289/21]

Photo of Stephen DonnellyStephen Donnelly (Wicklow, Fianna Fail)
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My Department, together with the HSE, will consider those key workers who will be vaccinated under Group 6 of the Provisional Vaccine Allocation Groups as they are deemed to be essential to the vaccination programme.

In relation to key workers in Group 10 of the Provisional Vaccine Allocation Groups, work has commenced on defining these workers.

Thomas Gould (Cork North Central, Sinn Fein)
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310. To ask the Minister for Health when persons with Addison’s disease will be included in the vaccine roll-out. [9298/21]

Photo of Stephen DonnellyStephen Donnelly (Wicklow, Fianna Fail)
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The COVID-19 Vaccine Allocation Strategy sets out a provisional list of groups for vaccination. The Strategy was developed by the National Immunisation Advisory Committee (NIAC) and my Department, endorsed by the National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET), and approved by Government on 8 December 2020.

Vaccine allocation is a matter for my Department and further information is available here: .

The rollout of the COVID-19 vaccination programme is the responsibility of the HSE.

The aim of the COVID-19 vaccination programme is to ensure, over time, that vaccine will become available to vaccinate all of those for whom the vaccine is indicated. Given that there will be initially limited vaccines available, it will take some time for all to receive those vaccines and that has necessitated an allocation strategy to ensure that those most at risk of death and serious illness receive the vaccine first.

The priority is to first vaccinate and protect directly the most vulnerable amongst us, that is, those most likely to have a poor outcome if they contract the virus.

The priority is to directly use vaccines to save lives and reduce serious illness, hence the focus on the over 65 year old cohort in long term residential care facilities, and healthcare workers in front-line services often caring for the most vulnerable.

The next group to be vaccinated are those aged 70 and older in the following order: 85 and older, 80-84, 75-79, and 70-74. Vaccination of this group will start in the week beginning the 15th of February.

All of the groups will be covered as further vaccine supplies become available and the immunisation programme is rolled out nationally.

The evidence will be kept under review and the allocation groups may be updated, where necessary, in light of new evidence.

Photo of Róisín ShortallRóisín Shortall (Dublin North West, Social Democrats)
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311. To ask the Minister for Health the projected date by which every nursing home will have received the second dose of the Covid-19 vaccine; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9299/21]

Photo of Stephen DonnellyStephen Donnelly (Wicklow, Fianna Fail)
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As this is a service matter, I have asked the Health Service Executive to respond to the deputy directly, as soon as possible.

Photo of Róisín ShortallRóisín Shortall (Dublin North West, Social Democrats)
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312. To ask the Minister for Health the protocol for ensuring that nursing home residents who were originally unable to receive the vaccine whether due to illness or other reasons will receive the vaccine when they are able; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9300/21]

Photo of Róisín ShortallRóisín Shortall (Dublin North West, Social Democrats)
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313. To ask the Minister for Health the protocol in the case that a nursing home resident is unable to receive the second dose of the vaccine within the recommended 21-day period due to illness or other reasons; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9301/21]

Photo of Stephen DonnellyStephen Donnelly (Wicklow, Fianna Fail)
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I propose to take Questions Nos. 312 and 313 together.

As this is a service matter, I have asked the Health Service Executive to respond to the deputy directly, as soon as possible.

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