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70% of Covid-19 patients admitted to ICU in the last six months were unvaccinated

There have been 70 fully vaccinated people admitted to ICU with a breakthrough infection since April.

Image: Alamy Stock Photo

70% OF COVID-19 patients admitted to intensive care units since April had not received a vaccine against the virus.

Among those who contracted the virus and died in the last six months, 50.8% were unvaccinated.

New reports published by the Health Protection Surveillance Centre (HPSC) provide data on the number of deaths and ICU admissions among people with Covid-19 and whether or not they were vaccinated.

Between 1 April and 25 September, the HPSC was notified of 356 people with a confirmed Covid-19 case who were admitted to ICU.

70% of those admitted to ICU – 250 people – had not received a vaccine or did not have a vaccination recorded on Ireland’s Covid-19 immunisation system.

The remaining 106 people, or 30%, had at least one dose of a vaccine against Covid-19 before they were admitted to ICU.

20% of the cases were vaccine breakthrough infections, which meant a fully vaccinated person had the virus more than 14 days after they received their vaccine.

Of the 70 people with a breakthrough infection admitted to ICU, 97% had an underlying medical condition.

They were aged between 30 and 88, with a median age of 67, and included 44 men and 26 women. 23 of them have died.

Overall, the HPSC has been alerted to 301 people with Covid-19 who have died since April, of whom 50.8% – 153 people – were unvaccinated.
49.2%, or 148 people, who died had received at least one dose of a vaccine, including 103 people classified as a breakthrough infection.

Among those who died after a breakthrough infection, 64, or 62.1%, had an underlying medical condition.

58 were men and 45 were women. They ranged in age from 50 to 97 with a median age of 82.

In total, 7.218 million vaccines against Covid-19 have been administered in Ireland.

That includes 3.5 million first doses, 3.4 million second doses, and 235,000 single doses of vaccines that only require one jab.

A booster vaccine programme for people with weakened immune systems is rolling out from this week, the HSE confirmed yesterday.

People aged 12 and over who are immunocompromised will be able to receive an additional vaccine dose, which will either be of the Pfizer/BioNTech or Moderna vaccine regardless of the person’s initial vaccine type.

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“As the vaccination programme for the 12 years to 15 years started later, those aged 12 years to 15 years who have been identified for an additional dose will be offered an appointment at a later date,” the HSE said.

“This is to facilitate the two month minimum interval from their last dose of Covid-19 vaccine.”

HSE Chief Clinical Officer Dr Colm Henry said that it “has been shown that people with weakened immune systems do not generate a full immune response to their first two doses of the Covid-19 vaccine”.

“This additional dose we are offering will mean they will get the maximum benefit from their primary vaccination course, giving them better protection against the serious effects of Covid-19,” Henry said.

About the author:

Lauren Boland

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