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Dublin: 12°C Thursday 26 May 2022

HSE opens new online self-scheduler to book booster vaccine appointments

The scheduling system will offer more than 3,000 individual appointments for four initial clinics from tomorrow morning.

Image: Sam Boal

THE HSE HAS opened an online self-scheduler to allow people to book their own appointment for a Covid-19 booster vaccine at a number of vaccination centres. 

The scheduling system, similar to the one currently used to book PCR tests, will offer more than 3,000 individual appointments from tomorrow morning.

The appointments are available at Croke Park in Dublin, the National Show Centre in Swords, Co Dublin, the Astro Active Centre in Enniscorthy, Co Wexford, and Scoil Carmel in Limerick, which will start on Thursday morning. 

People can avail of the booster at a vaccination centre using the self-scheduler if they are:

  • aged 40 and older
  • pregnant and aged 30 and over
  • living in a nursing home or a long-term healthcare facility
  • a healthcare worker aged 30 and over
  • aged 30 or over and have an underlying condition

Appointments are only available to those aged 30 or over because the initial clinics will use the Moderna/Spikevax vaccine.

The HSE said results from the initial rollout will inform the further use of the scheduler at a wider range of centres over the next week.

It said it will to continue to operate a combination of clinics as it moves through the booster Covid-19 programme.

“We will still have walk-in clinics and scheduled appointment clinics, in addition to these new self-scheduled clinics,” it said.

“We hope this new option will facilitate people in availing of the booster dose as soon as possible, to better protect themselves and their families and communities from serious illness caused by Covid-19.”

The online self-scheduler is available on the HSE website.

It comes after the Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly announced that those who are fully vaccinated who have had a breakthrough Covid infection will be able to avail of a booster after three months, down from six months. 

The move comes about following a recommendation from the National Immunisation Advisory Committee (NIAC) to the Chief Medical Officer (CMO) and has been endorsed by the Health Minister.

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In a statement this evening, Donnelly has said that Department of Health and the HSE will now work on operationalising the change.

The minister described it as “an important step” given the current epidemiological situation.

“I welcome this update to our booster vaccination programme. As with the update to the programme I announced last week, decreasing the interval for booster doses in those who have had a breakthrough infection is an important step given Ireland’s current epidemiological situation,” he said.

“The emergence of Omicron has prompted this amendment, specifically the significant concerns we have about the risk of re-infection which is estimated to be approximately five-fold higher with Omicron compared to the Delta strain.”

This evening, public health officials confirmed 5,279 new cases of Covid-19 in Ireland. As of 8am today, 443 patients are in hospital with the virus, of whom 102 are in ICU.

About the author:

Jane Moore

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