Covid-19: Almost 9,000 people attended weekend walk-in vaccine centres

Vaccines for 12-15-year-olds could start this weekend

Almost 9,000 people attended walk-in Covid-19 vaccination centres over the weekend, with close to nine out of 10 adults now at least partially vaccinated, health officials have said.

More than 30,000 people attended the walk-in centres over the weekend before last, the first time vaccination clinics were trialled without requiring appointments.

The majority of those who attended the walk-in centres were young people in their 20s and late teens.

Paul Reid, head of the Health Service Executive (HSE), said nearly 9,000 further people had received their first doses of the vaccine at walk-in centres over the recent weekend.


Around two thirds of those attending vaccination centres during walk-in periods had not been registered on the HSE’s vaccine portal, he said.

“All age groups were represented and on occasions full families attended. We’re on the final leg of the vaccination programme now,” Mr Reid said in a post on Twitter.

More than 89 per cent of adults are partially vaccinated, while over 77 per cent are full inoculated.

The first vaccinations for children in the 12 to 15 years age group could go ahead this weekend, according to National Immunisation Office director Lucy Jessop.

Registration for this age cohort will open on Thursday, she told RTÉ radio’s Morning Ireland. Consent from one parent or a guardian will be required and she urged them to read the details of the vaccination on the HSE’s website.

“It’s important that a parent make the right choice for their family.”

Dr Jessop, who is also a director of public health and is responsible for the coordination of all national immunisation programmes, said that the vaccine will be available through vaccination centres, GPs and pharmacies.

Parents and guardians should read up on all the information, she urged.

“I think there will be good take up,” she said, particularly in advance of the return to school.

This age group will be given the Pfizer vaccine which had been shown to be appropriate for the cohort, she said. International studies had shown there were no safety concerns.

While children generally recovered well if they had Covid-19, there had been a small number of cases of long Covid in children in Ireland, Dr Jessop said.

Separately, Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly has said Kazakhstan is to be added onto the list of countries where non-vaccinated incoming travellers to Ireland are required to enter mandatory hotel quarantine.

Kazakhstan is to be added onto the designated States list from 4am on Friday.