Northern Ireland's COVID-19 vaccination schedule published

  • The schedule for rolling out COVID-19 vaccination has been released, detailing when each of us is likely to get the vaccination.

    Northern Ireland's COVID-19 vaccination programme officially bagan last month after the first vaccine was given approval for widespread distribution. At that time, the Northern Ireland government announced that priority would be given to older patients and those vulnerable people with complicating factors that have the highest risk of dying from the disease.

    The full vaccination schedule for Northern Ireland has now been released by the Department of Health, laying out the final priority groups and expected times for each stage in the vaccination programme. This comes following the recent approval of the Moderna mRNA vaccine adding to the previously approved Pfizer-BioNTech and Oxford-AstraZeneca versions.

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    We are currently in the middle of phase one, which includes care home residents and workers, people over 80 years old, and social care staff. Over 109,000 out of an estimated 175,000 people in these groups have already been given their first vaccine dose, with this phase expected to end in February.

    Phase two is scheduled to begin in February and see everyone over 65 vaccined, in addition to anyone between 16 and 64 with an underlying medical condition that is known to increase risk of death with COVID-19. Phase three will begin in Spring and tackle all people over 50.

    It won't be until Summer this year that the mass vaccination programme for those aged 16 to 64 years starts, and it could take months to fully vaccinate everyone. A new programme of routine vaccination will also being planned to begin next year, which will assess the need for any long-term programmes.

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    Those who have been vaccinated will be given a card to prove their immunisation status, which may be required for travel and other things in the future. The Department of Health has urged people not to share images of their card online as it contains personal information.

    Source: Department of Health

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    Brendan is a Sync NI writer with a special interest in the gaming sector, programming, emerging technology, and physics. To connect with Brendan, feel free to send him an email or follow him on Twitter.

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