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Almost 50pc of people eligible for jab will be fully vaccinated by tomorrow – Taoiseach

Micheál Martin says country is ‘on track’ to have EU travel cert in place on July 19

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Taoiseach Micheál Martin spoke on CAP in the Dáil last week. Photo: Mark Condren

Taoiseach Micheál Martin spoke on CAP in the Dáil last week. Photo: Mark Condren

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Taoiseach Micheál Martin spoke on CAP in the Dáil last week. Photo: Mark Condren

Close to half of people who are able to get the vaccine will be fully vaccinated by tomorrow, according to the Taoiseach.

Micheál Martin has said that the Government is “very worried” about the spread of the Delta variant.

From today, pharmacies began administering the single dose Janssen jab to 18 to 34 year olds.

There were 343,000 doses administered last week and projections are similar for next week.

“I think we’ll be close to 50pc fully vaccinated by tomorrow,” he told reporters at Government buildings.

“We are making a lot of progress. That said, we are very worried about Delta.”

He said that cases are rising and that the numbers of people who are being tested are “significantly up” compared to last week.

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“We are getting very clear indications that Delta is beginning to have its impact.

“We are concerned about Delta and its potential impact,” he said.

Mr Martin also added that the “notion” that Covid is “just like the flu” needs to be dismissed as it is a “dangerous idea that gets floated every now and again”.

He said that hospitals are running above 2019 levels of activity and that high numbers of cases would disrupt health services.

“If we have a lot of cases in hospital again, that disrupts the resumption and restoration of normal health services and disrupts our capacity to deal with waiting lists,” Mr Martin said.

He warned people who are travelling abroad on holiday to “be careful”.

“We saw Germany last week restricting travel to Portugal, for example. This is a fast moving situation in respect of the Delta variant. I just have to say to people, be careful and be vigilant,” he said.

The Taoiseach also dismissed the “idea of Nphet versus Government” as “nonsensical”, saying that the “easier political decision” last week would have been to open up indoor dining as planned.

He also said that the country is “on track” to have the EU Digital Covid Cert in place by July 19.

He was speaking as the Government announced €40m funding for the North-South Research programme through the Shared Island Fund.

The funding aims to support the “deepening of links” between higher education institutions for the purposes of research.

Visit our Covid-19 vaccine dashboard for updates on the roll out of the vaccination program and the rate of Coronavirus cases Ireland


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