09 Dec 2021

Cllr Duffy welcomes Covid vaccine booster roll-out for 40 to 49-year-olds

Cllr Duffy welcomes Covid vaccine booster roll-out for 40 to 49-year-olds

The Covid vaccine booster will now be made available to those aged between 40 and 49 years of age following an announcement by Health Minister Robin Swann

Sinn Féin Councillor Sandra Duffy has welcomed the extension of the COVID vaccine booster programme to people aged 40 to 49.

The announcement from the Health Minister, Robin Swann, comes with the number of booster/third doses delivered in Northern Ireland having passed the 200,000 mark.

The Joint Committee of Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) has also recommended that 16-and-17 year-olds be offered a second vaccination dose.

Booster doses will inevitably rolled out on a phased basis, given the six month minimum gap between second doses and booster doses. GPs, community pharmacies and Trusts all have key roles in the booster programme.

Many people may receive a different vaccine for their booster from their first two doses and can be reassured that this is both appropriate and safe.

In relation to second vaccine doses for 16 and 17 year olds, the JCVI has recommended that these should be given 12 weeks or more following the first vaccine dose.

Cllr Duffy, who represents the Ballyarnett ward and is also Sinn Féin's local health spokesperson said: “I welcome the announcement that people aged 40 to 49 will now be able to get a COVID booster vaccine.

“The booster vaccine is being administered by GP practices and the Department of Health has indicated that there is no shortage of vaccines soit's important the roll-out is sped up.

“We have called on the Department to consider expanding the use of volunteer vaccinators and re-opening walk-in centres to reduce pressures on GP and health services as we face a difficult winter period.

“Vaccination, together with an effective find, test, trace, isolate and support system, offers the best way through this pandemic and it is vital that as many people as possible get vaccinated.”

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