Booster shots for health workers

 

Sir, – I read with disbelief reports that the National Immunisation Advisory Committee is not recommending booster doses of Covid vaccines for frontline healthcare professionals.

Its stance is in marked contrast to Northern Ireland where such a programme was introduced weeks ago. Other nations have also moved swiftly in this regard, recognising the devastating impact that sick or isolating doctors and nurses could have on their health systems.

Furthermore, thanks to the experience of the state of Israel, which many Irish commentators appear strangely intent on ignoring, we know that immunity from Covid begins to fade significantly six months after immunisation, a timeframe already exceeded for the vast majority of Irish healthcare professionals.

I find it hard to believe that NIAC is in possession of some superior knowledge or wisdom that allows it to effectively ignore international experience and the growing cries of alarm from frontline staff. Indeed, I can think of no logical reason for their current stance nor their painfully slow decision making processes.

Immunity is fading. Patients are dying. NIAC is hesitating. Enough is enough. Healthcare workers and their patients must be protected now.

– Yours, etc,

Dr RUAIRI HANLEY,

Navan,

Co Meath.

A chara, – The RTÉ programme, David Brophy’s Frontline Choir, is a reminder of the excellent work by our healthcare staff over the past 18 months. There has, rightly, been a lot of discussion about how to reward them – payments, extra holidays, etc.

With increasing numbers of Covid sufferers needing medical attention and hospitalisation, I suspect many frontline healthcare workers would settle for the booster/third Covid vaccine asap.

Why delay any longer and cause further needless distress to a group of workers we have already acknowledged are worthy of our gratitude?

Yours, etc,

MARGARET RIORDAN,

Celbridge,

Co Kildare.