THE vaccine programme in Northern Ireland will today open for those aged 25 to 29.
Anyone born between 01/05/91 and 31/07/96 can book an appointment at one of the Trust vaccination centres across Northern Ireland. Vaccine supplies remain limited and as a result there will be approximately 20,000 slots available weekly, therefore people awaiting their jab are asked to be patient. Additional slots for the following weeks will be released every Thursday.
In line with the latest JCVI advice, anyone under the age of 40 can book their vaccination at a trust centre in order to receive the Pfizer-BioTech vaccine.
If you are under 40 and wish to make an informed decision to receive the AstraZeneca vaccine there are slots available at the SSE arena and at participating community pharmacies.
If possible, booking for the vaccination centres should be done online at: covid-19.hscni.net/get-vaccinated.
However, where online booking is not possible, the telephone booking number is 0300 200 7813.
Details of participating pharmacies and how to book are online at: covid-19.hscni.net/community-pharmacy-covid-19-vaccination-service.
Health Minister Robin Swann said: “This announcement today will be welcome news for those within the age range and is a further testament to the successful delivery of the vaccination programme in Northern Ireland. Vaccination is vital in helping us move through this pandemic and there is no doubt that there are people in Northern Ireland alive today because they have been vaccinated.
“Next week we will see further easing of restrictions with the re-opening of licensed and unlicensed premises indoors, the remainder of tourist accommodation and the further relaxation to the rules over visiting indoors. This has been made possible because of the success of the vaccination programme and the majority of people acting on the public health advice. I appeal to everyone who is eligible for the vaccine to book an appointment. I know there are some younger people that think they don’t need the vaccine but we have seen what this virus can do and with variants now in the mix we all need to protect ourselves and those around us.”
Chief Medical Officer, Dr Michael McBride added: “While the risk of severe disease is lower in younger people, some may get very sick. There is much we still have to learn about this virus and post COVID syndrome or “long COVID”, which can be very debilitating for some. In making the decision to get the vaccine you are protecting not only yourself, but also those that matter to you. Every vaccine really does bring us closer, together.”
People making bookings are asked to be patient, as demand for appointments is expected to be strong.
The ongoing roll-out of the vaccination programme will continue to be dependent on the availability of vaccine supplies.