Published: 15 July 2021
With the number of vaccines administered currently at 4.9 million and that number expected to reach 5 million in the coming days, CEO Paul Reid has pointed to the need for ongoing caution:
“We know from ongoing experience that the virus continuously exploits the weakest and those who are most vulnerable. Right now those who are most vulnerable are those who are not vaccinated. The good news is that by administering almost 5m vaccines, we have significantly reduced the number of those who are in that most vulnerable category. The challenge for us is to get the remaining adults vaccinated to reduce risk. Our only constraint in doing is that supply. So if you are waiting for your vaccine take precautions, today, next week and onwards until you are fully vaccinated. The race to protect everybody continues.”
Acknowledging the rise in case numbers and admissions to hospital and ICU, Mr Reid stressed that we all need to
“treat this with significant caution. We know that cases most likely will continue to rise every day from now onwards. Data from the WHO demonstrates that incidence of COVID-19 within Europe shows that the 14 day incidence rate has increased by 50% compared to where it was two weeks ago. We are now the eighth highest out of 31 countries – showing a very significant growth all across Europe. The average age of new cases over the past 14 days is 27 years old with 87% occurring in those aged under 45, with 13% of cases occurring in those over 45. This compares to an equivalent average age of 40 during the peak in January with approximately 40% of cases occurring in those aged 45 and over. So we can see a very different trend in the age of people affected: showing the benefits of the vaccination programme.”
Over 2.75 million people have now received their first dose or single dose, representing 73% of the adult population. A total of 2.2million have received their second dose or single dose which is 59% of the adult population.
Uptake overall remains strong:
- For those aged 80 years and over – 99%:
- For those aged 70 to 79 – 98%:
- For those aged 60 to 69 – 94%:
- For those aged 50 to 59 - 91%:
- For those aged 40 to 49 - 84%.
Mr Reid noted that “we do rate extremely well by any benchmark across Europe in relation to our uptake across all age groups. In the week of July 5th we planned to administer over 300,000 doses – we exceeded this with 338,000 vaccines administered. This week, commencing July 12th, we plan to again administer over 300,000 doses and again we are on track again for that. The plan for next week commencing July 19th, is to continue to administer over 300,000 doses.”
Addressing those who are still awaiting vaccination, Mr Reid stated: “We would make a specific call to those people who are not vaccinated- we are conscious that we are now talking to a young population who have sacrificed so much during this pandemic. But we are so close to getting to a much better place – you will shortly receive an offer of a vaccine and we are looking for your support in the coming days and weeks. In the meantime, I know it’s hard but I urge you to be extremely cautious.”
Meanwhile, Staff at the HSE’s COVID-19 Vaccination Centre at Cillín Hill in Kilkenny recently marked their 35,000th administration of a vaccine.
There was a pleasant surprise on hand for Angela O’Sullivan of Ballyhale, Co Kilkenny, when she received jab number 35,000 from someone she recognised from his life outside of spending recent months helping out in the HSE’s roll out of the Covid-19 vaccine.
Dr Ronan Tynan, the famous Irish tenor singer from Johnstown, Co. Kilkenny, has been part of the team at the Kilkenny Vaccination Centre in The Hub at Cillín Hill – a venue in which he performed previously in front of 1,800 people.