Wednesday, 21 April 2021
Department of Health
2186. To ask the Minister for Health if he will amend Statutory Instrument No. 168 of 2021 in order that those who have had Covid-19 can meet with others who have had Covid-19 from one other household indoors without wearing a mask or staying two metres apart in the same way as those who have been fully vaccinated; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [20060/21]
2287. To ask the Minister for Health if persons who have immunity from having had Covid-19 will be able to enjoy the benefits of reductions in restrictions for those who have been vaccinated. [20446/21]
I propose to take Questions Nos. 2186 and 2287 together.
As of 30 March, current Government advice states that fully vaccinated people may meet with other fully vaccinated people from one other household indoors without wearing a mask or staying 2 metres apart and the HPSC has developed guidance in this regard. This change was made on the basis of the strong evidence showing the protection that is provided by vaccination and also in recognition that individual benefits derived from vaccination are important incentives to maintain momentum in the ongoing vaccination programme. Fully vaccinated people must continue to follow all other public health restrictions along with the rest of the population.
The duration of protective immunity (protection from reinfection) following SARS-CoV-2 infection is kept under review by the NPHET. In its most recent advice to the NPHET on this matter earlier this month, HIQA advised that the period of presumptive immunity should continue to be regarded as six months post infection. The implications of this advice is under review and will be considered by the NPHET in the coming weeks, including in relation to the application of certain public health measures.
2188. To ask the Minister for Health the number of cases of the P1 variant of Covid-19 identified as part of the ongoing serial testing in meat processing plants by week in tabular form; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [20067/21]