Vaccines for COVID-19

Introduction

COVID-19 is a serious illness that can affect your lungs and airways. It is caused by a virus called coronavirus. You can find out more about the symptoms of COVID-19 and how to protect yourself from the virus.

COVID-19 vaccines are medicines that give you protection from COVID-19. They help your body to defend itself against the virus.

Every resident in Ireland is eligible to get the COVID-19 vaccine.

Vaccination appointments are going ahead as normal during the current HSE service disruption.

A number of COVID-19 vaccines have been approved for use in Ireland. You can get more information on the vaccines from the Health Service Executive (HSE).

When you are given a vaccine, this is called vaccination. The HSE has general information on vaccines and vaccination in Ireland.

Who can register for a COVID-19 vaccine?

People aged between 35 and 69 can register for a vaccine appointment online or by phone (see 'How to register for the COVID-19 vaccine' below).

If you are aged between 35 and 39, you are invited to register on or after a specific day, depending on your age, see table below.

39 On or after Sunday, 20 June
38 On or after Monday, 21 June
37 On or after Tuesday, 22 June
36 On or after Wednesday, 23 June
35 On or after Thursday, 24 June

Registration is not open to younger age groups yet.

People aged 50 or over

If you are aged 50 or over and not already vaccinated, you can get your COVID-19 vaccine at a local pharmacy. To book your vaccine appointment at a pharmacy, contact a participating pharmacist.

If you are aged 50 or over and would prefer to get your vaccine at a HSE vaccination centre, register on HSE.ie.

How to register for a COVID-19 vaccine

To register online you will need:

  • Your PPS number
  • Your Eircode
  • A mobile phone number
  • An email address

If you do not have any of these or you are unable to register online, you can register by phoning the COVID-19 helpline on 1850 24 1850.

If you are deaf or hard-of-hearing, you can text HSELive on 086 1800 661 to register for your vaccination.

The HSE have a guide for online registration and a video explaining how to register online.

You cannot register online if you are based outside of Ireland or the UK. You need to call the COVID-19 helpline on +353 1 240 8787 to register.

You will get your appointment details by text message 3 to 7 days before your appointment. You will get your vaccine in a vaccination centre.

Priority groups

People who are most at risk from COVID-19 are being vaccinated first.

The groups currently getting the COVID-19 vaccine are:

  • People aged 65 years and over who live in long-term care facilities
  • Frontline healthcare workers
  • People aged 70 and over living in the community
  • People aged 16 to 69 who are at very high risk
  • People aged 16 to 69 who are at high risk
  • People aged 40 to 69 who have registered for a vaccine
  • Socially vulnerable adults
  • Pregnant women

If you live in a long-term care facility, you will be offered the vaccine there. If you are a healthcare worker, you will be offered the vaccine where you work or nearby.

If you are at very high risk and attending hospital or disability services, you will be contacted by your hospital or disability service when it’s your turn to be vaccinated.

Your GP will contact you when your vaccine is available if you are in the following groups:

If you are aged 70 or over, your GP can arrange a home vaccination if you cannot leave your home for medical reasons. If you do not have a GP, call the COVID-19 helpline for advice.

If you are aged between 35 and 69 and do not already have an appointment, you can register for a vaccine appointment online or by phone. People between the ages of 35 and 39 are invited to register on or after a specific day, depending on your age (see ‘Who can register for a COVID-19 vaccine?’ above).

If you are pregnant, your maternity hospital will contact you about your COVID-19 vaccine. You can also talk to your obstetrician, midwife or GP about registering for a vaccine appointment.

The COVID-19 Vaccine Allocation Strategy sets out the priority groups for vaccination. The list may change as more information becomes available.

Where can I get a COVID-19 vaccine?

The HSE will let you know through your healthcare team, news or public advertising when you can register for your vaccine.

You may receive your vaccination at a:

  • Vaccination centre
  • GP surgery
  • Pharmacy
  • Hospital

The COVID-19 vaccination is free of charge. You cannot get it privately.

Vaccination centre

Many people will be offered their COVID-19 vaccination in a vaccination centre and you will be able to register for your vaccine online.

There is at least one vaccination centre in every county. You can access a list of locations for the vaccination centres.

What can I do after I am vaccinated?

After you are vaccinated, you should continue to follow public health advice on how to stop the spread of COVID-19. For example, social distancing, wearing a face covering and washing your hands properly.

You are fully vaccinated:

Vaccine bonus

There is different public health advice for people who are fully vaccinated. This is known as a vaccine bonus.

Fully vaccinated people can meet indoors in private homes if there are no more than 3 households there. This can include unvaccinated people from 1 household if they are not at risk of severe illness. You do not need to wear a face covering or social distance when meeting indoors.

If it has been 28 days since your first AstraZeneca dose, you can follow the same vaccine bonus advice as fully vaccinated people. This does not include foreign travel.

If you had a positive PCR test in the past 9 months, you can follow the same vaccine bonus advice as fully vaccinated people. This does not include foreign travel. This also does not apply if you are:

  • Over 65 years of age
  • Immunocompromised because of disease or treatment

Read about what you should do if you are a close contact and you are fully vaccinated.

If you have symptoms of COVID-19 you should self-isolate and phone your GP to arrange a test.

Further information

Read more information about the COVID-19 vaccine on the HSE website.

If you are a deaf Irish Sign Language user and you need an interpreter to talk to a HSE COVID-19 helpline agent, you can use the Irish Remote Interpreting Service (IRIS). Irish Sign Language (ISL) videos explaining the COVID-19 vaccine are available on the HSE website.

You can read information and watch videos in different languages on COVID-19 and the different vaccines on the HSE website.

Before vaccines can be made available, they must be approved as being safe to use. The European Medicines Agency (EMA) is responsible for approving the use of COVID-19 vaccines in the European Union (EU). The EMA website shows the vaccines that have been submitted for approval and what stage of the process they are at. You can view the latest news updates from the EMA and key facts on COVID-19 vaccines.

You can keep up-to-date with the total numbers of COVID-19 vaccines given in Ireland on geohive.ie.

Page edited: 22 June 2021