Over one million people in the North vaccinated against Covid-19

Another 104 positive cases confirmed with 38 patients with Covid-19 in hospital

One million people in the North have been vaccinated against Covid-19. Photograph: Alan Betson

One million people in the North have been vaccinated against Covid-19. Photograph: Alan Betson

 

One million people in the North have been vaccinated against Covid-19.

Northern Ireland passed the milestone on Tuesday, when according to the latest figures a total of 1,000,928 people have received their first dose of the vaccine.

More than half a million people have been given their second jab.

The North’s First and Deputy First Ministers, Arlene Foster and Michelle O’Neill, described it as a “momentous day” and a crucial step towards greater freedoms for society.

On Tuesday the North’s Department of Health reported the deaths of two people who had previously tested positive for Covid-19. It brings the total number of fatalities recorded by the Department to 2,152.

Another 104 positive cases of the virus were confirmed. A total of 38 patients with Covid-19 are receiving hospital treatment, with three in intensive care.

As of Tuesday almost 70 per cent of the North’s adult population has now been vaccinated, five months after the first inoculation was administered in the North.

Vaccination programme

The vaccination programme in Northern Ireland is currently open to anyone aged over 30, and it is expected to be extended to the next age cohort shortly.

The AstraZeneca vaccine is being used for the over 40s, while those aged under 40 will receive the Pfizer jab.

However the North’s Department of Health has advised that anyone of any age who has received an AstraZeneca first dose should proceed with their second dose of the same vaccine type.

The North’s Minister for Health, Robin Swann, encouraged everyone to get the vaccine when their turn comes, and said he was looking forward to getting his second AstraZeneca jab in the weeks ahead.

“Vaccination saves lives,” he said. “It is vital to our hopes of a better summer and of continuing progress against the virus.”

The head of the North’s vaccination programme, Patricia Donnelly, said that while the supply of the vaccine was currently limited, she expected this to improve in June.

“We are determined to maintain momentum and will keep vaccinating people as quickly as supplies allow,” she said.

“I would once again ask people waiting their turn to be patient [AND]keep checking the online booking portal as new appointment slots are being opened up on a regular basis.”

People aged 40 or over can book their AstraZeneca first dose at the Vaccination Centre at the SSE Arena in Belfast and at community pharmacies across Northern Ireland.

Those aged 30-39 can book their Pfizer first dose at regional vaccination centres run by the Health and Social Care Trusts.