Lockdown for unvaccinated not being looked at – Taoiseach

Ireland is not looking at implementing a lockdown for those unvaccinated against Covid-19, the Taoiseach has said.

Speaking in Navan this afternoon, Micheál Martin said he would look with interest at how Austria implements its lockdown for those who have not availed of a vaccine.

However, he said that Ireland has a vaccine rate of 93% of the adult population, which places the country is a very different position compared with Austria, where 65% of people are fully vaccinated.

Mr Martin reiterated that the situation was “serious”, adding that vaccination levels meant the country was in a much different position than last year.

He also said the vaccine booster campaign was already showing promising results, with a reduction in serious illness among those in their 80s.

The Taoiseach said that there were three elements to efforts to contain the virus – those being vaccine boosters, antigen testing and behaviour – and added that he would support the subsidisation of antigen tests to make them more affordable for people.

He said the Cabinet Covid Committee, which meets later on, would consider NPHET’s recommendation on the extended use of Covid-19 vaccine certificates.