Everyone over the age of 70 from Sneem, Co Kerry has received the Covid Vaccine following an unexpected delivery last week.
The vaccine was rolled out after 300 doses of the Moderna jab arrived without notice. The villege’s retired GP, Dr Paddy Malone also assisted with the distribution on Saturday.
137 people were vaccinated on Saturday. They were subsequently supervised by two nurses and a retired anaesthetist in Murphy’s Bar in the Kerry village after the jabs were administered.
The bar was opened to facilitate the jabs, but no drink was served.
“We took what we got”
Dr Malone said that Sneem was “fortunate” to get the 300 doses of the Moderna vaccine as other parts of Kerry who got the Pfizer jab, received far less.
Dr Malone also added, “Sneem got a huge supply of Moderna – we took what we got”.
The retired GP and his wife Dr Diane Foord (also retired) were assisted by Dr Hernan Ganzo Alvarez.
Speaking to Claire Byrne this morning, Dr Malone and Dr Alavarez also praised the community spirit of the people of Sneem and those involved in the safe administering of these vaccines.
The vaccine is now available to people with underlying health conditions in Sneem.
Being forced to “jump through hoops”
Dr Malone who retired in 2017 with almost 40 years experience, criticised the bureaucracy surrounding the offer made by himself and his wife to help with the rollout the of vaccine.
He also added that retired GPs were being forced to “jump through hoops”. Dr Malone said that retired GPs were being asked to provide certificates of basic skills, to be allowed vaccinate people.
“Staff the larger vaccination centres”
This all comes as the HSE annouced they were stepping up a recruitment drive for vaccinators.
It said that 1,500 vacinators were needed, “specifically geared to staff the larger vaccination centres”.
They also added that were unable to comment on individual cases, as to do so would breach confidentiality.
They added that there was no obstacle to retired GPs being recruited to vaccinate.
HSE Cheif Executive, Paul Reid tweeted this message of hope this morning.
“Thankfully our numbers in hospital with #COVID19 has reduced again to 427 and 103 in ICU. Good news for so many families. I know it’s is relentless for everyone but we should all be assured our actions & sacrifices will get us there. Take care the weekend”.