Over 90,000 vaccines given to people in NI

According to the Department of Health, the latest figures show that 91,954 jabs have been deployed. Credit: PA

More than 90,000 vaccines have been delivered to people in Northern Ireland.

The jabs have mainly been given to health service staff, care home residents and their carers.

According to the Department of Health, the latest figures show that 91,954 jabs have been deployed.

  • 68,664 have had a first dose (HSC staff and care home residents and staff)

  • 13,949 have received a second dose (mainly care homes where 55% of care homes have now had 2nd doses)

  • 9,341 already vaccinated by GPs

While nearly 14,000 of those people have received two doses for full immunisation, the lives of healthcare workers are being put at risk because of delays in receiving their second dose of the Pfizer vaccine according to NI's Chair of the British Medical Association.

They have had to wait up to 12 weeks before receiving it rather than the three weeks recommended by the manufacturer.

Dr. Tom Black claims hundreds of slots remain empty at vaccination centres across Northern Ireland.

In a statement the Department of Health said: "There has been some misunderstanding about “empty slots” in the booking schedule for these vaccination centres.

"These slots are only released shortly before they are available in order to be able to manage the inclusion of different staff groups on a phased basis and also to ensure there is adequate vaccine to cover all the slots. Slots can be filled at short notice if required.

"There is no doubt that demand remains strong for the vaccine and this will continue to be met in a planned and phased manner. It is a constant process to manage the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine, which comes in large batches, in order to avoid unnecessary waste of this valuable product. It is normal to move sessions around to maximise the use of the vaccine - so staff will usually be contacted to confirm their sessions. Flexibility is essential.

"Alongside the Pfizer/BioNTech Covid-19 regional vaccination centres, GPs are administering the Oxford/Astra Zeneca vaccine to the general public. GPs across NI have received their first supplies, with those aged 80 plus first in line for their jab. This will be extended across the community, as supplies allow, with age and other clinical vulnerability factors determining the priority list.

"We will all have to be patient as we await our turn. Please be assured that staff are working extremely hard to vaccinate as many people as possible as quickly as possible, as supplies permit.

"There will inevitably be frustrations along the way but everyone is urged to not take out these frustrations through ill-informed and unfair criticism of the work staff are doing."

Watch Gareth Wilkinson's report here:

Domiciliary workers from the independent sector can receive the inoculation at the vaccination centres.

GP clinics across the country are vaccinating the over-80s this week using the Oxford-AstraZeneca medication.

That process is expected to be completed by the end of the month.

Supplies of a third vaccine, made by Moderna, are expected by spring.

READ MORE HERE: Covid: Moderna vaccine given approval for use in UK