Covid: 4,688 new cases, eight new Omicron cases detected

As of 8am today, 518 Covid-19 patients are hospitalised, of which 108 are in intensive care units
Covid: 4,688 new cases, eight new Omicron cases detected

James Cox

A further 4,688 cases of Covid-19 have been confirmed in the State today, including eight new cases of the Omicron variant.

As of 8am today, 518 Covid-19 patients are hospitalised, of which 108 are in intensive care units.

The Department of Health also confirmed eight new cases of the Omicron variant have been confirmed, bringing to 18 the total number of cases that have been identified following whole genome sequencing.

The gap between completion of a primary schedule of Covid-19 vaccination and a booster dose will be reduced to three months from six months, Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly has said.

The news comes as the Government looks to speed up the booster programme amid concerns over the Omicron variant.

The recommendations were made by the National Immunisation Advisory Committee (Niac) to chief medical officer Dr Tony Holohan, who has endorsed these recommendations.

A fourth dose of an mRNA vaccine, no sooner than three months after a third vaccine, has also been recommended for those who are immunocompromised and for whom a third dose had been previously recommended as part of an extended vaccine schedule.

Booster vaccines will continue to be offered in the priority order previously recommended.

Niac have also recommended that those individuals who have received one dose of a two-dose primary vaccine schedule and who subsequently have a confirmed Covid infection should complete their primary vaccination course four weeks after diagnosis or onset of symptoms.

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