Nurses To Administer Swine Flu
Vaccine In Ireland as GPs Opt Out
Public health nurses in Ireland may have to be drafted in to
give the swine flu vaccine in some parts of the country.
The nurses will also be used in Dublin because of a lack of GPs
willing to take part in the scheme, it was learned last night.
The news came as health officials here insisted the vaccine is
safe after fears were voiced in Germany about it.
It is understood that public health nurses in parts of north
Dublin may have to give at-risk patients the jab instead of GPs
who are have refused to sign up due to uncertainty over their
According to the Health Service Executive (HSE), over 150 more
GPs have signed up on top of the existing 1,800 who had indicated
their intention to give the vaccine to at-risk patients.
The vaccine is being distributed to GPs taking part in the scheme
over the next month and full-scale clinics are expected to be
provided by doctors in the next fortnight.
It emerged on Monday that some GPs who had not indicated their
willingness to take part in the vaccination had received vaccine.
The HSE spokesman said that around 12 GPs who received the vaccine
contacted the HSE saying they did not want it. The supplies are
to be collected by the company distributing the doses.
Meanwhile, chief medical officer Dr Tony Holohan yesterday insisted
the vaccine was safe despite fears expressed by medics in Germany.
The German controversy arose after it emerged that the Pandemrix
vaccine, made by Glaxosmithcline, was being given to the general
public, while the Baxter vaccine is to be administered to the
German government and armed forces.
The Pandemrix vaccine is currently being distributed to GPs in
this country although supplies of the Baxter vaccine are also
Dr Holohan said the Pandemrix vaccine contains an adjuvant to
boost the immune system's response and the Baxter vaccine does
not have this ingredient.
However, he said the adjuvants were used in other vaccines also
and they had been tested in safety trials.
He added: "We are quite happy that this vaccine, as with
all other influenza vaccines, has a very good safety profile."
Both vaccines have been licensed by the European Medicines Agency
and the Irish Medicines Board.
Children will need two jabs of Pandemrix spaced three weeks apart,
because their immune systems do not respond as well as adults.
Five people have died from swine flu in Ireland, the latest being
a man who passed away on Sunday. He had an underlying illness,
as had the other victims.
full list of h1n1 vaccine ingredients, alerts and warnings.
Reference Source: www.independent.ie
October 21, 2009