People should speak with their GPs and pharmacists about getting the flu vaccine, which is more important than ever before, a Fine Gael TD has said. TD Neale Richmond said, “As we battle against the Covid pandemic, it is vital that every step is taken to reduce the threat of the annual flu season. “The Government is expanding the provision of vaccination without charge to all of those in the at-risk groups, including healthcare workers, and to all children aged from 2 to 12. “Information provided to me shows that the HSE has placed orders for 1.35 million doses of the Quadrivalent Influenza Vaccine (QIV) for the forthcoming winter. This vaccine will be made available to all persons in an at-risk group from 6 months up.
“The HSE has also ordered 600,000 doses of the Live Attenuated Influenza Vaccine (LAIV), which is delivered via nasal drops rather than by injection and will be made available to all children aged from 2 to 12 years old inclusive. “The first delivery cycle of QIV influenza vaccines to all sites (GPs, pharmacists, nursing homes etc.) started on 17th September, with deliveries continuing to all sites every two weeks. “By the end of the second cycle of deliveries last week, approximately 800,000 doses of influenza vaccine were delivered to over 3,000 sites across the country. “This represents an increase of 25% in quantities of vaccine delivered when compared with 2019. “To date all sites have received 75% of the quantity used last season, and the allowance for the third delivery which began from 15th October will increase this to 90%. Further stocks will be available for the fourth round of deliveries. “Deliveries of the children’s flu vaccine started on the 28th of September, and all of the total order of 600,000 doses is expected by mid-October, as planned.
“However, this is not the end of it. Those not covered by the public vaccination programme can avail of influenza vaccination from GPs and pharmacists on a private basis. “There are ample stocks and I am urging everyone to speak with their GPS and pharmacists about getting the flu jab. I’m booked in for my jab, are you?,” Deputy Richmond concluded.