Wednesday, 27 January 2021

Questions (718)

Robert Troy

Question:

718. Deputy Robert Troy asked the Minister for Health when he plans to initiate phase three of the vaccine roll-out. [3805/21]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

The Government is committed to the timely implementation of a COVID-19 immunisation programme.

The National COVID-19 Vaccination Strategy, which was prepared by the High-Level Task Force on COVID-19 Vaccination, was signed off by Cabinet on 15 December 2020.

The vaccines will be rolled out in three phases - the initial roll out, a mass ramp-up and open access. The highest priority groups, those over the age of 65 living in long-term care facilities and frontline healthcare workers in direct patient contact, will receive the vaccine first.

The only substantive limitation on the pace of implementation will be supply. As more vaccines are approved and arrive, the delivery schedule will change.

All of the groups will be covered as further vaccine supplies become available and the immunisation programme is rolled out nationally. This is wholly dependent on supply lines and on candidate vaccines obtaining approval. Therefore, it is not possible at this time to determine a timeframe for the full vaccination programme.