Northern Ireland passes Covid-19 jab milestone as walk-in vaccinations begin

Northern Ireland’s Covid-19 vaccination drive passed the landmark of two million jabs, it was announced yesterday.

Sunday, 27th June 2021, 3:22 pm
Updated Sunday, 27th June 2021, 3:35 pm
People arrive at the SSE Arena on Sunday with walk-in vaccinations starting for the first time for those aged 18 and over. Picture By: Arthur Allison/Pacemaker.

The total includes all first and second doses administered in the Province.

Around 80% of the adult population have now received their first jab and almost 60% are fully vaccinated with both doses.

The two million mark was passed on the same day as a walk-in vaccination option was offered for the first time.

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From Sunday, people are able to receive a first dose of the Pfizer jab at the SSE vaccination centre in Belfast without a prior appointment slot.

Health Minister Robin Swann hailed the two million milestone.

“This has been achieved thanks to immense work across our health and social care system,” he said.

“I again pay tribute to everyone involved in our vaccination programme.

“I also pay tribute to the good sense of the people of Northern Ireland – coming forward in very large numbers to get protected from the virus.

“The drive continues to get as many people fully vaccinated as quickly as possible. My message to anyone holding back is simple – do it now.”

Mr Swann added: “Vaccination protects you, it protects others and helps us get back to normality – to enjoying so many things that were not possible for much of the past 18 months.

“The Covid-19 threat is still very much with us, as evidenced by the spread of the Delta variant in recent weeks.

“Our vaccination centres across Northern Ireland are now offering Pfizer first doses to everyone aged 18 and over.

“Localised take-up initiatives will also be continuing, including pop-up, mobile and walk-in vaccination facilities.

“It is also vital that people get a second dose of whatever vaccine they had first.

“Full vaccination with both doses offers important protection against the Delta variant.”