140,000 doses of the Covid vaccine have been administered in Ireland this week.
Taoiseach Micheal Martin revealed the total in a Covid-19 update posted to Twitter this evening.
The Taoiseach said figures illustrated how the country’s vaccination programmme was “gaining momentum”, despite the unwelcome announcements made about both the AstraZeneca and Johnson and Johnson vaccines earlier this week.
In total, 1,188,354 doses of the Covid-19 vaccine have been administered in Ireland, as of Friday, April 18.
838,644 people have received their first dose, while 349,710 have got their second jab and are fully vaccinated.
Pointing to the fact that Sunday saw the lowest number of daily new Covid-19 cases reported in Ireland in over four months, Mr Martin said the country was "continuing to make progress in relation to Covid-19."
The Health Protection Surveillance Centre reported a further 269 cases tonight - the fewest since December 14.
Mr Martin said the drop in the numbers of patients with Covid-19 in hospitals and intensive care was another sign things were moving in the right direction.
A quick update on the week just gone, and what lies ahead.— Micheál Martin (@MichealMartinTD) April 18, 2021
Despite all the challenges, we administered 140,000 doses of the #CovidVaccine this week.
The rollout is gaining real momentum. Great work by @HSELive and all involved. pic.twitter.com/GeASoZnq8H
As of 8am this morning, 181 Covid-19 patients were hospitalised, 47 of whom were in intensive care units.
Mr Martin spoke of the "landmark" agreement reached between Government and doctors that will see the HSE create 84 consultant posts in Public Health for the first time ever.
Under the proposed agreement, 34 of the 84 consultant grade posts in Public Health will be filled over the coming 12 months.
A further 30 will be filled between June 2022 and June 2023.
The final 20 posts will be filled between June 2023 and December of that year.
This agreement, he said, would be “a lasting legacy” of the pandemic.
In closing, the Taoiseach said next week would see the pace of the vaccination programme increase even further.
“Hopefully, we will see further progress in reducing numbers and reopening of our society as the weeks go by," he added.