The decision to close Roscommon Vaccination Centre later this month is premature and should be delayed at least until a decision on the need for an additional Covid booster vaccine has been made, local TD Denis Naughten has stated.
“We have seen recently that Sweden’s Health Agency has recommended those aged 80 or above or living in nursing homes should receive a second booster shot of Covid-19 vaccine and other countries are also considering the need for a fourth vaccine,” stated Denis Naughten.
“In Ireland, we are awaiting a decision from National Immunisation Advisory Committee (NIAC) on whether a fourth vaccine will be needed, and there are many under 16’s who are only now becoming eligible for their booster, so closing vaccination centres now would appear premature.
“If we want people to avail of vaccines then we have to make it as easy as possible to access vaccination centres and not expect people to make long journeys when they are juggling work and families or may have transport difficulties.
“It is hard to see the benefit in dismantling a vaccination centre now if a widescale vaccine rollout is needed again later in the year.
“In addition, the Government has been trying to encourage parents to vaccinate children in the age 5 to 11 category, yet parents will be expected to travel to vaccination centres in Moate or Carrick-on-Shannon and those who have had their first dose will now have to travel long distances to get obtain their second dose. I would urge the HSE to delay this closure at least until a decision is made on the rollout of a fourth vaccine.”
The HSE has confirmed that the vaccination centre in Roscommon Town will close on Sunday 27th March.