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‘Today we edged ahead of our nearest neighbours’ – Ireland overtakes UK in vaccine rollout, says Taoiseach

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Taoiseach Micheál Martin. Credit: Colin Keegan

Taoiseach Micheál Martin. Credit: Colin Keegan

Taoiseach Micheál Martin. Credit: Colin Keegan

Ireland has overtaken the UK for the percentage of fully-vaccinated adults, Taoiseach Micheál Martin has said, as the country reached 300,000 Covid-19 cases since the pandemic began.

"The vaccine rollout is continuing at great pace. Today we edged ahead of our nearest neighbours - a brilliant effort by everyone involved,” Mr Martin said.

The Taoiseach said Ireland now has 71.4pc of adults fully-vaccinated, compared to the UK’s 71.1pc.

A further 1,427 cases of the virus were confirmed by the Department of Health today.

There 164 people in hospital with Covid-19 and 26 in ICU.

Dr Tony Holohan praised the uptake of vaccinations, particularly among the younger cohorts.

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Queues were formed from as early as 6am at some vaccination centres, mainly consisting of those in their late teens and early 20s.

"Today we have reached the milestone of 300,000 cases reported in Ireland since the beginning of the pandemic,” Dr Holohan said on Twitter.

“Today we have also seen how solidarity continues to be the hallmark of our response with young people across the country lining up to get vaccinated both to protect themselves and to play their part in protecting the community.

“I strongly urge anyone eligible for a vaccine to come forward and avail of the opportunity as soon as possible,” he added.

The Covid-19 walk-in vaccination clinics have “exceeded expectations” on its first day, the City West centre’s vaccination lead has said.

Forty walk-in clinics across the country have been opened for the bank holiday weekend. Some began inoculating yesterday, the majority have begun today and some will open from tomorrow.

The vaccination lead for the Dublin Hospitals Midlands Group, Dr Karn Cliffe, said it appeared to be mostly teenagers and people in their early 20’s attending the walk-in clinic.

“This was completely new, it’s completely different and we really didn’t know what to expect but there were queues from 6 o’clock this morning,” she told Independent.ie.

“It was brilliant, people were queuing down through the car park and snaking around the car park.”

Dr Cliffe said the atmosphere at the centre this morning was “brilliant” and although people were queuing there was enough vaccinators on to deliver the vaccine.

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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