Homeless people offered one shot J&J Covid-19 vaccine at Dublin clinic
The temporary centres will give a number of "at-risk groups" access to the jab over the coming months.
Homeless people in Dublin are being offered one shot Johnson & Johnson Covid-19 vaccines at a temporary vaccination clinic set up today by the Health Service Executive (HSE) in Dublin city centre.
The clinic will provide the vaccine for 700 medically vulnerable people living in homeless services over the next two weeks.
Approximately 350 people are set to receive the vaccine this week.
This is the initial phase of the vaccination programme for socially excluded groups who have been prioritised by NIAC (National Immunisation Advisory Committee) as having a significantly increased risk of illness from the virus.
These include people who are homeless and members of the Traveller and Roma communities.
Speaking at the clinic today, Minister of State for Public Health, Wellbeing and the National Drugs Strategy, Frank Feighan said the programme "demonstrates the value the Government places on equity and inclusion" in the public health service.
Feighan also congratulated individuals for attending the clinic, who he said, "have had to endure personal sacrifices to remain safe during Covid-19".
"One of the benefits of the pandemic is that we have found new ways to provide health services for people who are homeless," he continued.
"These are backed up by an additional investment of €11m in health services for people who are homeless during Covid-19 though the HSE national service plan 2021.”
"The rollout of the vaccination programme to all those in prioritised socially excluded groups will ultimately benefit over 40,000 individuals."
The Minister added that other at-risk groups such as direct provision residents and those attending drug treatment centres will also be receiving the Covid-19 vaccine "in due course".
"The delivery of the programme takes into account the unique circumstances affecting these groups, including difficulties some may have in accessing and engaging with health services," he said.
"Other at-risk groups, such as residents in direct provision and people attending drug treatment services, will benefit from this targeted approach in due course."