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29 Nov 2021

'Delighted the decision has finally been made': Boosters authorised for health care workers

'Delighted the decision has finally been made': Boosters authorised for health care workers

Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly said he had asked the HSE some time ago to prepare a programme for the rollout.

Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly announced last night that the booster shots for Healthcare workers have been approved.

Mr. Donnelly said that the National Immunisation Advisory Committee (NIAC) has advised the use of the Pfizer & Moderna vaccines and can be used regardless of the initial vaccine course. 

Mr. Donnelly said he had asked the HSE some time ago to prepare a programme for the rollout.

The vaccines will be administered this weekend to around 270,000 frontline health staff.

Minister Donnelly said:

"I received the NIAC advice just in the last few hours.

"We've been working hard with the HSE in the background to be ready should we receive this advice.

"In further good news, the HSE advises that it believes it will be ready to begin administering these booster vaccines to healthcare workers this coming weekend."

Up to 3,500 health staff are currently absent from work because of Covid-related illnesses.

The Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO), has said:

“The INMO welcomes that the decision to extend vaccine boosters to healthcare workers.

“This decision was made later than we would have liked. We now need to see a rapid rollout of the vaccine boosters to healthcare workers to make up for lost time. The vaccine supply and capacity to do so is there.

“A lot needs to happen now to keep our hospitals safe for the winter. We can see from today’s trolley figures and the number of healthcare workers who are on COVID-related leave that unless the Minister for Health and the HSE produce a credible winter plan that our hospitals will be in a bad place this winter.”

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