Alliance Health spokesperson Paula Bradshaw MLA has welcomed the announcement of the next stage of the vaccination programme, but said further clarity is required on next steps.
An additional booster dose is to be made available to all adults over 75 and vulnerable over-12s this spring. An autumn booster programme is also planned for later this year.
“It is welcome there is now an announcement on the advice concerning the next stage of the vaccination programme, but it will need to be accompanied swiftly by further detail,” said Ms Bradshaw.
“Some members of the public will be surprised and even confused to see an announcement concerning higher age groups come so soon after one about children’s vaccination, for which detail is also required. It also remains the case some people have not come forward for any vaccinations, while others have opted against the booster.
“What is required now is a clear statement of how this will be taken forward and also why. We need clear advice to the public as soon as possible on what ‘waning immunity’ means, and what the optimum gap between vaccines will be.”