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Vaccine target of 100,000 doses last week missed after delay with AstraZeneca

The delays follow a change in AstraZeneca’s vaccine delivery schedule for last week and this week.

Health Minister Stephen Donnelly
Health Minister Stephen Donnelly
Image: RollingNews.ie

THE HSE FAILED to hit the Government’s target of administering 100,000 vaccine doses last week due to delivery issues with the AstraZeneca dose. 

The aim was to administer 100,000 doses last week as Ireland’s vaccination programme ramps up but the AstraZeneca doses did not arrive in Ireland as planned. 

The delays follow a change in AstraZeneca’s vaccine delivery schedule for last week and this week, something the State’s vaccination taskforce was informed of at “very late notice”, chair of the group Professor Brian MacCraith said on Sunday. 

Professor MacCraith said the delay is “not a reduction in deliveries” and that the State can “recover completely what had been lost” from next weekend.

It’s understood the delay last week and this week will affect the delivery of 25,000 AstraZeneca doses in total. 

The total number of doses administered last week was just over 81,000. 

The Government had said the vaccination rollout would accelerate this month with 100,000 doses being administered per week in March, rising to between 200,000 and 300,000 doses per week in April.

Latest figures show that between Monday and Saturday last week, 78,465 vaccine doses had been administered. Of these, 70,627 of these were first doses and 7,383 were second doses. 

A total of 435,895 vaccine doses have been administered in Ireland to date up to last Saturday. 

Meanwhile, the target of vaccinating all over-85s by the end of this week is unlikely to be achieved, Health Minister Stephen Donnelly has confirmed. 

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Donnelly said the “large majority of 85s and overs” will have received their first dose of the Covid-19 vaccine by Sunday.

However, some who are housebound will have not received their vaccine yet, he said.

Donnelly also said that Ireland has pre-ordered 18.5 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines, meaning that if a ‘booster’ shot is needed next winter, then it can be given as long as it is still effective against Covid-19 variants circulating at that time.

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