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vaccine latest Covid vaccine portal to open for people aged 30-39 from next week

Pharmacists are also due to administer vaccines for the first time from next week

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The Covid-19 vaccine portal is to open to people aged 30 to 39 next week but there has been a slow down in jabs this week amid uncertainty over lack of deliveries.

From next week pharmacists are also due to administer vaccines for the first time with the aim of offering the jab to around 140,000 people over 50 who have not yet registered.

They will also have a limited supply of Pfizer vaccine to give to people who live far from vaccination centres.

It comes amid continuing uncertainty over deliveries of vaccines and concern that people in their 60s are being outpaced by younger less at-risk people who are getting fully vaccinated with two doses earlier.

Darragh O Loughlin who heads the Irish Pharmacy Union said around 1,000 pharmacists are due to get supplies of the one shot Johnson and Johnson vaccine.

Around 140,000 people over 50 who have not yet registered for a vaccine will be encouraged to go to their pharmacist for the jab where the pharmacist can enter their details in a portal.

The expectation is that the pharmacists will receive around 68,000 doses of the Johnson and Johnson vaccine but this week the HSE received just 12,000.

Another 17,000 are expected next week, 10,000 the following week and 27,000 in the week afterwards.

Between 250,000 and 270,000 vaccines will be administered this week although at this point it should be at over 400,000 a week.

Taoiseach Micheal Martin and Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly yesterday updated Cabinet on the progress of the Covid-19 Vaccination Programme.

So far 53pc of adults have received a first dose but just 26pc are fully vaccinated with two doses

The High-Level Taskforce and HSE informed the Minister for Health that;

280,000 people in the 50 to 59 age group have received their first dose

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160,000 people aged 45 to 49 have received one dose

Over 201,000 people aged 45 to 49 have registered on the vaccine portal as of June 2.

Around 30,000 pregnant women (between 14 and 36 weeks) are now being targeted for vaccination, with 5,200 achieved so far this week.

Socially vulnerable groups such as Travellers and Roma communities are being offered via GPs or Vaccination Centres.

Vaccinations are also being rolled out in Irish prisons.

The HSE has implemented a revised plan, following NIAC advice, to reduce the interval between AstraZeneca doses from 16 to 12 weeks.

It is now updating that to further reduce the gap from 12 to eight weeks, following updated NIAC recommendations. This plan will be completed in the coming days.

There are around 420,000 AstraZeneca second doses due to be administered between mid-June and early August.

By reducing the interval form 12 weeks to eight weeks, this schedule is expected to be brought forward by three to four weeks.

There are 38 Vaccination Centres operating currently.

It is expected that community pharmacies will be operational in the vaccination programme in the week commencing June 14.

Some 1,000 pharmacies will administer the Johnson and Johnson vaccine for remaining people in the over-50 cohort.

350 pharmacies will assist Vaccination Centres to administer Pfizer vaccine in communities that are distant from the nearest centre.

This week, the plan is to distribute between 250,000 and 270,000 vaccines

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