221,000 vaccines administered in first four days of this week; 54% of adult population now vaccinated

221,000 vaccines administered in first four days of this week; 54% of adult population now vaccinated

AstraZeneca vaccine against Covid-19. Picture Dan Linehan

THE head of the Health Service Executive (HSE) has said that more than 54% of the adult population is fully vaccinated.

More than 221,000 vaccines were administered in the first four days of the week.

Despite the concern over the growing number of Covid-19 cases associated with the Delta variant, Paul Reid said that the number of people in hospital with the virus is declining.

“Some good news for a Friday. Another day yesterday of more than 58,000 vaccinations administered and more than 221,000 in the first four days of this week,” he said.

“Now more than 54% of the adult population are fully vaccinated. Thankfully Covid-19 patients in hospital reduced to 50 this morning.”

It comes as talks between the Government and the hospitality industry are set to continue over the weekend over plans to reopen indoor dining.

Representatives of the industry are pushing for a reopening date of July 19, however, some in Government believe that plans will not be in place in time.

Some have suggested that July 26 is a more realistic date to have the system in place.

The new protocols to be put in place will restrict indoor dining to those who are fully vaccinated or have immunity from the virus after recovering from Covid-19.

Taoiseach Micheál Martin said that primary legislation will be required to put the new measures on a legal footing. The legislation is set to make its way through the Dáil next week. While it is expected to pass by the end of next week, there are doubts whether it will be in place for July 19. The government will also look at using a testing system as part of the resumption of indoor dining.

Meanwhile, a consultant has said that the spike in the number of people attending emergency departments has set a new record.

Dr Fergal Hickey, consultant in emergency medicine at Sligo University Hospital, said that many emergency departments are under significant pressure.

“The trolley issue arises when we have finished patient’s emergency care but there is no bed for them to go to and that adds significantly to the burden of the department’s experience,” Dr Hickey told RTÉ.

“Emergency departments over the last few weeks have set new records for daily attendance. Given that these are new records, there are actually higher than the level we would expect to see over the winter period.

“If you add the effect of the Delta variant to that, that’s going to make it even more difficult. At the moment we cannot achieve social distancing, it’s simply impossible. The situation is dangerous and will become even more dangerous if we see more patients because of the Delta variant.”

CUH was the most overcrowded hospital in the country yesterday. There were 34 patients on trolleys in the emergency department, according to INMO figures. There were a further 12 patients on trolleys at the Mercy.

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