Covid-19 vaccine: Over-70s among first groups to be vaccinated 

Covid-19 vaccine: Over-70s among first groups to be vaccinated 

It comes as representative groups for frontline workers said their members should be considered for priority access to the inoculation programme.

It is understood that the first priority group identified to receive the vaccine is those aged 65 and above who are resident in long-term care institutions, such as nursing homes, according to reports in The Irish Times.

The second group will be frontline healthcare workers with direct patient contact, followed by the over-70s. The plan is to immunise this final category in phases beginning with those aged over 85.

The plan was drawn up by the Department of Health and the National Immunisation Advisory Council, and approved by the National Public Health Emergency Team (Nphet).

Priority access 

It comes as representative groups for frontline workers said their members should be considered for priority access to the inoculation programme.

Groups representing gardaí, members of the Defence Forces, teachers and transport workers said that while they accept the elderly and vulnerable should be first in line, their members should also be considered for priority access due to their role in the State’s response to the pandemic. 

The Irish Prison Service has requested priority access for the State’s 3,800 inmates.

No new deaths of Covid-19 patients were reported on Monday for the second day in a row. 

This leaves at 2,099 the total number of Covid-related deaths. Nphet reported 242 confirmed cases of the virus, bringing to 74,468 the total number of cases in the Republic.

It comes as chief medical officer Dr Tony Holohan said it is “more likely than not” that Ireland will experience “challenging” levels of Covid-19 transmission in January due to increased socialisation over Christmas.

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