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More than one million fully vaccinated in Northern Ireland

About 70% of adults have received both doses of a coronavirus jab.

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About 70% of the adult population have now been fully vaccinated (PA)

About 70% of the adult population have now been fully vaccinated (PA)

About 70% of the adult population have now been fully vaccinated (PA)

More than one million people in Northern Ireland are now fully vaccinated, the Department of Health has said.

Around 70% of the adult population have received both doses of the Covid-19 vaccine.

The milestone comes eight months after the first jab was administered in Northern Ireland.

Minister for Health Robin Swann described the vaccination programme as an “outstanding success”.

He added: “It has helped us take significant strides towards the more normal life that we all want to see return.

“Rolling out the vaccination programme has required a huge amount of hard work and dedication, so to all involved please accept my sincere gratitude.

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“I appreciate the long hours you have worked to ensure that we could give the people of Northern Ireland protection from this virus.

“For all those who have already come forward for vaccination, thank-you. You have helped play your part in getting us to where we are. You have helped to protect yourself, those around you and our health service.”

The Ulster Unionist minister said there is a need to increase vaccine take-up rates in the coming days.

Time is running out in vaccination centres for first doses so if you have not already come forward, then please do so soonPatricia Donnelly, head of the vaccination programme

The Delta variant is driving up daily cases of the virus, which has also led to an increase in the number of people admitted to hospital.

“If we can make a concerted effort to increase vaccine uptake in the next week or so, this can help make a decisive difference in terms of preventing serious illness and hospitalisations,” Mr Swann added.

“Our regional vaccination centres are closing for first doses in less than seven days so please if you’re not vaccinated, make it your priority to get a first dose as soon as you can.”

Chief medical officer Professor Sir Michael McBride said it is a life-saving vaccination programme.

“There are many people alive here today because they have been vaccinated,” he added.

“This virus is not going away and increasingly the only way we all get back to doing more of the things we want to do is for more of the population to be vaccinated.”

Patricia Donnelly, head of the Covid vaccination programme in Northern Ireland, said: “We are very pleased with the success of the programme but we do not take these milestone for granted.

“There has been a lot of hard work and determination behind this programme and we know we are not at the finish line yet.

“Uptake in the older age groups has been exceptional but only 56% of our under-30s have come forward to date.

“We do not want this age group to miss out. Time is running out in vaccination centres for first doses so if you have not already come forward, then please do so soon.

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(PA Graphics)

(PA Graphics)

Press Association Images

(PA Graphics)

“Earlier this week we also announced that those young people who turn 18 on or before 31 October 2021 will be able to get vaccinated.

“If you’re in this group then you can simply go to one of the regional vaccination centres, or if you prefer you will shortly be able to make an appointment using the online system.”

Meanwhile, Belfast Trust has made an emergency appeal for staff to work as hospitals come under pressure.

“We are under extreme pressure in the RVH (Royal Victoria Hospital) and Mater as we care for an increasing number of Covid-19 patients, alongside emergency admissions,” it said.

“We are asking for help from our Trust nursing staff to work tonight and overnight and ask those available to work tonight.”

DUP leader Sir Jeffrey Donaldson said that the number of people admitted to hospital with Covid-19 has been increasing and will have an impact on other health services.

“Due to these pressures, there will be a downturn in elective care in the Belfast Trust from Monday,” he said.

“There has also been a call put out to off-duty nursing staff to work this evening because of pressures at the Royal and Mater hospitals.

“Across the UK there has been an increase in the numbers of younger people contracting Covid-19.

“Whilst we have hit another significant milestone locally with over one million people now fully vaccinated, we lag behind other areas of the UK in terms of our younger population.

“In Scotland around 30% of under-30s are not yet vaccinated whilst in England that figure rises to 34%. In Northern Ireland, however, that figure rises to just over 42%.

“Vaccination is not just about protecting yourself but is also vital to protect our NHS and to safeguard the relaxations we have been able to introduce.”

A further 1,264 cases of Covid-19 were reported in Northern Ireland on Sunday.

Two further deaths of patients who had previously tested positive for the virus have also been notified.

In total, 2,204,177 vaccines have been administered.


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