Clare Government Senator Says Not Enough People Available To Bring Further PCR Testing On Stream

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A Clare Government Senator says there aren’t enough people available in the community to bring further PCR testing facilities available on stream.

It comes as NPHET is meeting today to consider the next steps in the country’s Covid-19 battle.

Meanwhile, the European Medicines Agency has approved the use of vaccines in children aged between 5 and 11.


The EMA has made a significant approval that vaccines are safe for use in children.

The data will now be considered by NIAC, to see if they give approval for 5 to 11 year olds to take what is a reduced dose of Pfizer.

The Taoiseach said earlier this week it’s unlikely the first jabs will be given this side of Christmas.

It comes as NPHET is meeting to consider whether primary school children should have to wear masks.

Clare’s Sinn Fein TD believes a significant reason for the spread among young children has been the discontinuing of contact tracing in primary schools.

Kilrush-based Deputy Violet-Anne Wynne wants this to resume immediately.

Nearly one in every hundred children tested positive for Covid-19 last week.

However, Infectious diseases Professor Sam McConkey says there are better measures for primary schools, rather than mask-wearing:

While in the Dáil the debate continues to centre around a lack of PCR testing.

Testing facilities in most counties are difficult to obtain, including in the Banner.

While limited tests are available this evening in Ballymaley, almost all slots tomorrow are booked up.

Shannon Airport’s testing facility, which became operational this week, has no tests available until at least 11.50 tomorrow morning as of this lunchtime.

It’s led to concerns that despite Tanaiste Leo Varadkar’s assertions that cases may be ‘plateauing’, albeit at a high rate, that some cases are being missed.

Mountshannon-based Fianna Fail Senator Timmy Dooley says despite the lack of testing availability here and across the country, it’s a logistical challenge to get further facilities on stream.

NPHET will issue recommendations to the Health Minister later, but it’s not expected more restrictions will be announced today.