Ireland is to receive an additional 550,000 doses of the BioNTech/Pfizer vaccine as part of an accelerated delivery of 50 million extra doses for the European Union. Speaking today, April 14, EU Commission president Ursula von der Leyen said that the EU had struck a deal to bring forward delivery of the vaccines from Q4 to Q2, beginning immediately.
Von der Leyen said that the additional vaccines would be distributed pro rata amongst the member states, which means that Ireland will get an extra 550,000 or so between April and June, making for a total of 2.6 million doses of the vaccine over the three-month period – enough to vaccinate 1.3 million people.
The additional doses will take total supplies of the BioNTech/Pfizer vaccine to the EU to 250 million. Von der Leyen said that so far 100 million EU citizens have received a vaccine, with one quarter of them, or 27 million, getting both doses. “The faster we reach our target of having 70 per cent of the adult population in Europe vaccinated, the better the chances we have of containing the virus,” she added.
According to Our World in Data, 1.08 million doses of a vaccine had been administered in Ireland up to April 12, with 317,000 – or 6.5 per cent – of the population being fully vaccinated with two doses.
This is very good news for all EU member states, who have been left in a state of doubt over ongoing issues relating to the Astra Zeneca vaccine and yesterday’s announcement of a pause in the delivery of the one-jab Johnson & Johnson vaccine, which in both cases relate to possible connections between the vaccines and a rare type of blood clot.