Ireland is to purchase almost 10 million doses of Pfizer/BioNTech’s Covid-19 vaccine in 2022 and 2023 under new plans approved by the Irish Government.

The deal will see 4.9 million vaccines delivered next year and the same amount the following year at a cost of €191 million.

The vaccines are part of the European Union’s additional purchase agreement with the pharmaceutical giant and are to be bought for the possibility that booster jabs are needed in the years ahead.

A total of 31 percent of the population has had at least one dose and 12 percent are fully vaccinated.

7-day vaccine summary: 26 Apr to 03 May 2021

+4.0% 1st Dose Progress
+1.1% Fully Vaccinated Progress

Note: percentages of 16+ population only. Data sources in bio.#CovidVaccine #COVID19 #COVID19Ireland

— Ireland Vaccine Progress (@IrelandVaccine) May 5, 2021

Mr. Donnelly has said that he expects between 220,000 and 240,000 vaccines to be administered this week.

He said the vaccination of people aged over 65 in long-term care facilities such as nursing homes along with front-line healthcare workers is now “substantially complete”.

More than 202,400 people from the very high-risk group have received their first dose vaccine.

In addition, the Government heard that Pfizer/BioNTech are in the process of updating the formulation of the vaccine and that doses secured via the new agreement would be capable of being stored with standard refrigeration.

This will remove the need for the complex cold storage chain currently in place for the vaccine, as it must be kept in freezing temperatures.