Alan Kelly Warms 60-69 Years Olds Being “Left Behind” Due to 12-week Vaccine Gap

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Labour Party Leader Alan Kelly warned that 60-69 year olds are being left behind because of the 12 week gap between their first and second doses of AstraZeneca, and repeated his message to the government to remain focused on the vaccination programme, controlling new variants and supporting those sectors still impacted while welcoming the lifting of restrictions.

Deputy Kelly said: “I am very concerned that those in the 60-69 age group and other cohorts who received the AstraZeneca vaccine are being left behind as they won’t be fully vaccinated for many weeks to come. I am asking the government again to request a review by NIAC of the dosing gap between AstraZeneca doses which is currently three months.

concerned about the risks from new variants

They are very concerned about the risks from new variants with protection as low as 33% for the first dose according to a UK study. Deputy Kelly said the rollout of antigen testing was vital to suppress and control the virus saying that many sectors are crying out for these to be used – from events to aviation, and it makes no sense that Ireland has dragged our feet on this. He called for Ireland to roll out the model used in the UK where every household has been given 7 free tests.

Other priorities for Deputy Kelly were the growing problems in non-Covid healthcare from maternity to oncology where he called for a targeted action plan to tackle delayed appointments for tests and treatment. Finally, he voiced concerns about the maintenance of employment and income supports and action to control rent increases and evictions.

For updated and factual Public Health information and advice on COVID-19 Coronavirus, please visit hse.ie/coronavirus or call 1800 700 700

For the latest information on the Covid-19 Vaccine Programme, please visit hse.ie/covid-19-vaccine