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The vaccination centre in Citywest Hotel yesterday. SAM BOAL

People in their 40s urged to avail of booster as queue wait times ease off at walk-in centres

National Show Centre in Co Dublin has approximately 900 in the queue, and has temporarily stopped others from joining the queue.

LAST UPDATE | 19 Dec 2021

THE HSE IS encouraging people aged in their 40s to avail of a booster vaccine if they can, with walk-in centres accepting those in that age group from today

HSE chief Paul Reid has said that “there are now moderate queues all across the country”, and encouraged people to go to walk-in centres before they closed for the day. 

The Citywest vaccination centre closed to walk-ins for the day due to reaching full capacity for the day. Two other locations out of 24 vaccination centres open to walk-ins today – the National Show Centre in Dublin and Simonstown GAA Club in Navan – stopped accepting walk-ins temporarily to catch-up with demand.

This morning, wait times of between 1-3 hours were at several walk-in sites, but in the past hour they have reduced to under an hour.

National Show Centre in Co Dublin had around 900 people in the queue at 9am for its walk-in vaccination and won’t be taking any more walk-ins, the HSE said. The centre was due to open for walk-ins from 8.15am to 11.15am today, and there had been two other time slots scheduled for later in the day.

The queue at the Citywest walk-in centre is “at least” 3 hours long, the HSE said at 9am, adding that the car park is closed and walk-in is at “full capacity”.

The walk-in centre in Simonstown GAA Club in Navan, Co Meath has also been closed until 1pm, after originally being closed until 10am. The current queue time there had been 3-4 hours earlier.

People at the Galway racecourse walk-in centre, where there had been a two-hour long queue this morning, were advised to “consider returning later in the day”. THe queueu is now 45 minutes long and is open until 6pm.

Shoreline Leisure Centre in Greystones, Co Wicklow had a 3-hour wait time at noon, but is now down to 30 minutes; and Abbey Court Hotel in Co Tipperary had a queue time of 2 hours at noon but is also down to 30 minutes.

Most centres around the country have a queue time of less than a half hour or no queue at all.

Boosters are being offered to those aged in their 40s for the first time from today, as part of an announcement made by the Government this week.

40-49 year olds were originally to be offered vaccines in January, but this was brought forward to 27 December, and then brought forward again to today.

Since Monday, 290,000 vaccines have been administered. 92% of people aged 12 years and older have now had two doses, with 94% of over 18s fully vaccinated. Reid said that 1.5million booster doses and third doses had also been administered.

From today, people aged in their 40s can go to a walk-in centre to get their vaccine dose, or wait for the HSE to send an appointment for a booster vaccine. 

The HSE has a list on Twitter of walk-in centre locations, opening hours for those locations, and who is eligible to go to those walk-in centres. You can also look for a Covid-19 walk-in centre on the HSE website.

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