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First dose will not be enough to counteract Indian/Delta variant of COVID-19

DUBLIN: Those who received the first dose of AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine in Ireland may soon receive their second dose.

The National Immunisation Advisory Committee (NIAC) recommended that the interval between the first and second doses of AstraZeneca be shortened to ensure protection from the Indian Delta variant. NIAC says an interval of eight to 12 weeks between the first and second doses is sufficient.

A study from the UK has shown that the single dose of AstraZeneca vaccine provides less protection against the Indian variant known as Delta.

NIAC’s recommendation in this regard was forwarded to the National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET). Chief Medical Officer Dr. Tony Holohan has sought the HSE’s opinion on this matter, but the HSE has not yet responded.

The move would have an impact on healthcare workers, those in their 60s, and many patients with underlying diseases who have already received their first dose of AstraZeneca. As of yesterday, 115 cases of the delta variant have been reported in Ireland.

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