Tuesday, 12 July 2022
Department of Health
I propose to take Questions Nos. 799 and 830 together.
The immunisation programme in Ireland is based on the advice of the National Immunisation Advisory Committee (NIAC). The Committee reviews data relating to Covid-19 vaccines on a rolling basis and makes recommendations on vaccination policy to my Department.
Following the recommendation for use of vaccines against Covid-19 by the European Medicines Agency (EMA) and authorisation for use by the European Commission, the NIAC develops guidance for their use in Ireland which is contained in the Immunisation Guidelines for Ireland. These guidelines are continuously updated and include guidance on all new vaccines as they are approved for use in Ireland.
You can read the guidelines at: www.hse.ie/eng/health/immunisation/hcpinfo/guidelines/covid19.pdf.
On 25 November, the EMA recommended granting an extension of indication for Covid-19 vaccine Comirnaty to include use in children aged 5 to 11. The NIAC reviewed those findings and recommended that vaccination be extended to those aged 5 -11 years, those in this age group will be offered an mRNA vaccination to protect themselves from COVID-19. There are currently no vaccines authorised for use for those aged under 5 years old.