85% of vaccines delivered to Ireland had been administered by end of February

A doctor has claimed around 200 surgeries still have not received any doses for the over 85s.
85% of vaccines delivered to Ireland had been administered by end of February

Taoiseach Micheal Martin with 4th year medical students working at the GP-led vaccination Centre at MTU (CIT). Picture: Larry Cummins

The Department of Health has said 520,320 vaccines had been delivered to Ireland by the end of February.

The latest vaccine data to Monday, March 1, shows 446,474 vaccines have been administered.

The figures show over 303,000 people nationwide have received their first dose of the vaccine and almost 143,000 have received their second.

5,780 Covid-19 vaccines were administered on Monday.

82% of the vaccines administered have been the Pfizer BioNTech shot while 15% are the AstraZeneca injection.

The Department said in a statement this afternoon that it expects the 500,000th dose will have been administered within the next week.

"The Covid-19 Vaccination Programme strategy is to distribute all vaccines that we receive as quickly as is operationally possible, subject to ensuring the availability of the second dose," it said.

"Our programme is only limited by supply, and the rollout plans must be flexible to accommodate unforeseen events."

A breakdown of the vaccines delivered to Ireland shows we have received 393,120 of the Pfizer vaccine, 40,800 of the Moderna and 86,400 of the AstraZeneca.

The vaccine deliveries for the month of March are still being finalised with manufacturers.

Advance Purchase Agreements show Ireland receiving over one million doses per month in the second quarter of the year. This is projected to be made up of 54% Pfizer, 10% Moderna, 21% AstraZeneca and 15% Janssen. The Janssen order is subject to EMA authorisation.

Stephen Donnelly has said he has concerns about the capacity of AstraZeneca to meet delivery targets. Picture: Leah Farrell / RollingNews.ie

Stephen Donnelly has said he has concerns about the capacity of AstraZeneca to meet delivery targets. Picture: Leah Farrell / RollingNews.ie

Health Minister Stephen Donnelly has said he has concerns about the capacity of AstraZeneca to meet delivery targets.

However, Mr Donnelly said despite that the pace of the roll-out is increasing.

"Cohort 4 - those with underlying conditions putting them at very high risk - will begin to be vaccinated next week which is really, really good and welcome news.

"It is a complex group and there is complex work in planning and engagement going on. The HSE is currently working through the details for how these patients will be contacted and where they will be vaccinated."

Earlier, Tánaiste Leo Varadkar blamed an undelivered consignment of 25,000 AstraZeneca vaccines for the failure to administer the targetted 100,000 vaccines to the public last week.

The HSE said a ‘relatively small number’ of GP practices are experiencing issues with their vaccine supplies.

It comes after a doctor claimed around 200 surgeries still have not received any doses for the over 85s.

The HSE maintains it is on target to administer the first dose of a Covid injection to this age cohort by the end of this week.

Monaghan based GP, Illona Duffy, says there are numerous issues.

"I'm aware of two other practices in Monaghan Town alone who have still received no vaccine so haven't been able to vaccinate their over-85 population and still aren't sure when they are going to get them.

"I think we are aware of about 200 practices that haven't received vaccines and it's really not good enough."

Dr Duffy said that staff are starting to receive angry calls and comments from worried patients and their families.

On Tuesday, I had the son of a patient come and give out to us and tell us it was our ineptitude that we hadn't vaccinated all our patients at this stage because the HSE were quite clear that everybody over 80 would now be vaccinated this week.

Dr Duffy said the message the HSE are putting out is not clear and is not fair.

GP Advisor to the HSE, Dr Ray Walley, said today that the health service will make up for last week's missed target of 100,000 doses.

Dr Walley said there will be another large clinic being provided to GPs in DCU this weekend which will be a significant contribution to increasing the number of vaccines being delivered.

"I think we are on target. This time a year ago we wouldn't have been thinking that we would be administering vaccines but somewhere early next week we will have the greater number of 85-year-olds dealt with through general practice."

Meanwhile, the number of patients going to GPs with symptoms of Covid-19 has fallen to its lowest level since mid-November.

They are now seeing an average of one Covid patient a day - compared to nine in early January.

Dr Shane McKeogh, one of the founders of GP Buddy, who tracks calls to surgeries around the country said numbers are at the lowest in nearly four months.

"You can see the case numbers starting to come down as well so we are beginning to drive it out of the community which is where the battle has to be fought on this."

Meanwhile, the number of Covid-19 patients in hospital has fallen to 461, according to the latest data from the HSE.

This is down 28 from yesterday as 47 patients have been discharged in the past 24 hours.

It is a significant drop on this day last week when there were just under 600 Covid patients in hospitals around the country.

Overnight, there were 107 Covid patients in intensive care with six new admissions and nine discharges.

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