Covid19 Vaccine in West Cork

Your friendly local pharmacist’s serving local families with Covid vaccines and Covid tests in West Cork including Covid tests in Bantry, Beara, Castletownbere, Kenmare and surrounding areas.

Today, Tuesday December 29th 2020 is a day that will go down in Irish history.  The first Covid19 vaccines have been given today in our Republic.  The vaccination started today in St. James Hospital Dublin and will be rolled out nationwide over the coming week.  Each patient will require a second dose in 3 weeks time.

What is vaccination?

Vaccines save lives and safely protect the health of people in Ireland each year. Worldwide, they save at least 2-3 million lives each year – and many more from crippling and lifelong illnesses. Vaccination has eradicated diseases like smallpox and has minimised the impact of a range of other infectious diphtheria, polio, meningitis B and C and measles, mumps and rubella.

Vaccination is a simple, safe, and effective way of protecting people against harmful diseases before they come into contact with them. A vaccine is a medicine that trains your immune system to react to an infection, and uses your body’s natural defences to build resistance to that infection. It does not cause the disease itself. Most vaccines are given by an injection, but some are given orally (by mouth) or sprayed into the nose.

What vaccines are used in Ireland?

In Ireland today, vaccines are offered to children to protect against 13 diseases:

  1. Diphtheria
  2. haemophilus influenzae (Hib) type b
  3. hepatitis B
  4. HPV
  5. Measles
  6. meningococcal disease (types A, B, C, W & Y)
  7. mumps
  8. pertussis (whooping cough)
  9. pneumococcal
  10. polio
  11. rotavirus
  12. rubella
  13. tetanus

These diseases may result in serious complications including death. Outbreaks of these serious infectious diseases occur if children are not vaccinated. Other vaccines are provided for adults, including the annual flu vaccine.

Why are vaccinations important?

Vaccination is one of the most cost-effective health interventions available, saving millions of people from illness, disability and death each year. The World Health Organisation (WHO) states a comprehensive vaccination programme is a cornerstone of good public health in any country.

What are the risks of not vaccinating?

Those who are not vaccinated when they can be are at a higher risk of developing infection if they are exposed to a vaccine preventable disease. If they become infected, they are more likely to develop complications compared with those who have been vaccinated. They also risk further passing their infection onto others. This includes people in the population who are unable to develop an immune response to fight infectious diseases and are at a high of serious complications and death, and infants who have not yet been fully vaccinated and are similarly are at risk of serious complications.

Are Covid vaccines safe?

All vaccines used in Ireland are safe. They are licenced by the HPRA (Health Products Regulatory Authority) and the EMA (European Medicines Agency) only when they have been shown to be safe and effective. Rest assured that each of the approved Covid vaccines in use in Ireland have been through the rigorous testing process for safety and effectiveness before they were approved for use in Ireland.

Licenced vaccines undergo thorough testing in multiple phases of trials before they are approved for use. All medicines can cause side effects, however vaccine side effects are usually mild, like a sore arm or leg where the injection was given, or a slight fever. Serious side effects to vaccines are extremely rare.

What does effective mean in relation to vaccines?

Vaccine effectiveness means how many vaccinated people end up being protected by the vaccine. As with all medicines, vaccines work in a way than has benefits and limitations – even working at their best they cannot protect from every possible case of disease. What is herd immunity? When someone is vaccinated, they are very likely to be protected against the targeted disease. But not every vaccinated person becomes protected, and not everyone can be vaccinated. When a lot of people in a community are vaccinated against a disease like the flu, the virus has a hard time circulating because most of the people it encounters are immune. The more people are vaccinated, the less likely people who are unable to be protected by vaccines are at risk of even being exposed to the virus. This is called herd immunity. Vaccinating not only protects yourself, but also protects those in the community who are unable to be vaccinated.

Vaccines available in Ireland are safe, effective and regulated carefully. No vaccine will be used in Ireland unless it is demonstrated to meet safety and effectiveness standards. Ireland works within an EU system that regulates medicines and vaccines and makes sure they are safe and effective. All vaccines will be carefully monitored over time and safety data and information will be published and shared. Unprecedented scientific mobilisation is showing promising results. Traditionally, it has taken many years to develop a vaccine, confirm its safety and efficacy, and manufacture enough of it for public use. This timeline has been reduced for COVID-19 vaccines though unprecedented scientific and medical research, investment and collaboration. Vaccines provide hope – but keep your guard up While this is a very positive development, it is critical that all of us keep in mind that the vaccine is not our first line of defence against COVID for now, nor will be for some time to come. Everyone in Ireland, and our health service and the people we care for, will need to keep focus on and sustain the prevention and protective actions that have become part of how we are working and living.

Who will be offered the Covid vaccine first?

The first groups vaccinated will be frontline healthcare workers and people who are most at risk from serious infection if they catch COVID-19. Once these priority groups have been vaccinated, the vaccine will be open to the rest of the population. This will go on throughout 2021.

This is the provisional order in which people in Ireland will be vaccinated against COVID-19.

  1. People aged 65 years and older who are residents of long-term care facilities (likely to include all staff and residents on site).
  2. Frontline healthcare workers.
  3. People aged 70 and older.
  4. Other healthcare workers not in direct patient contact.
  5. People aged 65-69.
  6. Key workers.
  7. People aged 18-64 with certain medical conditions.
  8. Residents of long-term care facilities aged 18-64.
  9. People aged 18-64 living or working in crowded settings.
  10. Key workers in essential jobs who cannot avoid a high risk of exposure.
  11. People working in education sector.
  12. People aged 55-64.
  13. Other workers in occupations important to the functioning of society.
  14. Other people aged 18-54.
  15. People aged under 18 and pregnant women.


 When will people get the COVID-19 vaccine?

The vaccines will be delivered in stages so it will take time to vaccinate the population. Certain priority groups will be vaccinated first. We expect that this will start before the end of December, now that the European Medicines Agency (EMA) and EC have provided marketing authorisation for the first vaccine for use in the EU – the Pfizer BioNtech vaccine, called Comirnaty. Each different vaccine will be reviewed and licensed separately by the EMA.

Where will they be given?

Vaccines will be administered from long-term care facilities and/or hospitals initially. In the later phases of the programme that will focus on the next priority groups, people may be vaccinated through mass vaccination clinics, GP surgeries and community pharmacies. This will be done by qualified and trained healthcare workers, including hospital doctors, community medical officers, nurses, GPs and pharmacists. More information will be given about the later phases when they have been agreed and implemented. Will there be a charge? COVID-19 vaccines will be free of charge for everyone living in Ireland. The vaccines will not be available privately at this time.

We look forward to being included in the Covid19 Vaccination Schedule in the coming weeks to months and will let you know in due course.

Instant Covid test in West Cork

For an instant Covid test in West Cork, contact us here at Glengarriff Pharmacy by phone on 027 63744 or contact us online today.

Contact your local pharmacy in Glegarriff for advice on Covid vaccines in West Cork.

Contact your local pharmacists in Glengarriff by phoning 027 63744, or contact us online, to find out more about the rollout of Covid vaccinations in West Cork, including Covid vaccines in Glengarriff, Kenmare, Bantry, Castletownbere and surrounding areas.

Today is a ray of light, the dawning of a new future for our country and a positive end to a trying year.

Best wishes,


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