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All available appointment for monkeypox vaccine booked, hours after online registration opens

The HSE said it will be making further appointments available at the start of next month.

ALL AVAILABLE APPOINTMENTS for the monkeypox vaccine have been booked, just hours after the online registration system went live. 

The HSE opened the online registration system this morning for people who wish to avail of the vaccine to protect against monkeypox.

Appointments were made available in vaccination clinics in a number of locations around the country. 

Demand for the vaccine has been high and “all available vaccine appointments have now all been booked”, the HSE said this evening. 

The HSE said it will be making further appointments available at the start of next month.

“The HSE wishes to thank people for their patience in this regard and will provide an update as soon as additional appointments become available,” it said. 

The HSE noting that vaccination supplies are limited currently. 

To date in Ireland, monkeypox cases have occured in gay and bisexual men, and transgender people, the HSE said. 

The HSE is prioritising vaccination for gay and bisexual men and transgender people who are at highest risk of contracting monkepox and have outlined criteria which will help people to decide if they should get vaccinated at this time.

Before registering for a vaccine appointment, the HSE is asking gay and bisexual men and transgender people to self-assess their risk by checking if they report one or more of the following:

  • have had 3 or more sexual partners in the past three months
  • have had group sex within the past six months
  • sixhave had an STI in the past 6 months
  • have had sex in a sauna, dark room, or sex-club etc in the past six months.

“People will not be asked any questions regarding the self-assessment of risk by the HSE and anyone who feels they meet the criteria is encouraged to register and receive the vaccine,” the HSE said.

As of last Wednesday, the HSE has identified 194 cases of monkeypox in Ireland since outbreaks began to be identified earlier this year.

Of these cases, 11 people were hospitalised with the disease.

In a statement to the Oireachtas Health Committee last week, Dr Siobhan Ni Bhriain, the National Clinical Director for Integrated Care at the HSE, told TDs and Senators that it is estimated that between 6,000 and 13,000 people would benefit from receiving a monkeypox vaccine.

To date, the HSE has secured over 2,000 vials of monkeypox vaccine, but both the health service and Department of Health are seeking to secure additional doses.

Earlier this year, the European Medicines Agency advised countries that they could administer the vaccine intra-dermally, which reduces the amount of vaccine used in each inoculation.

With reporting by Tadgh McNally

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