Irish Wheelchair Association calls on the Government to prioritise people with disabilities in Covid vaccination plan, amid concerns over vaccine supplies.

Irish Wheelchair Association has called on the Government to prioritise people with disabilities under its vaccination plan, as concerns grow over vaccine delays. The charity said that people with physical disabilities are at severe risk due to underlying conditions.

Michael Doyle, Director of Assisted Living in Irish Wheelchair Association said: “Many people with physical disabilities are at severe risk of Covid due to health conditions that could cause complications and hospitalisation, yet they have not been recognised as a vulnerable group by the Government.

We are encouraged by the Government’s commitment to supporting frontline vaccinations in the disability sector, but both sides of the equation need to be protected. At the current time, people over 65 in residential settings with disabilities are rightly getting vaccinated. Yet worryingly, those living independently in the community and being assisted at home are not.

This is a real issue. Our members have told us they are very keen to be vaccinated but are concerned that they will be left waiting.

We are incredibly grateful to our frontline staff who are among the many healthcare workers going beyond the call of duty to keep people safe and well,” said Michael Doyle. “With concerns about vaccination supplies growing, we urge the Minister for Health to urgently include people with disabilities on the priority list to ensure their protection.”

Irish Wheelchair Association is Ireland’s largest organisation supporting people with physical disabilities to lead active and independent lives and has 20,000 members. It is the leading provider of home support for people with physical disabilities in the State, providing 1.3m hours of service to over 1,500 people every week in every part of the country.

The organisation’s frontline workers have been supporting people with physical disabilities in homes across Ireland throughout the COVID-19 crisis, with an emergency response team reaching people who have Covid-19 or have had to isolate.


For media queries:

Meabh Smith
Head of Communications
Irish Wheelchair Association
087 246 3568

Megan Fitzsimons
Communications officer & social media specialist
Irish Wheelchair Association
085 803 5278

People are at the heart of everything that we do and that is enshrined in all of our values. Find out more about our range of services and supports for people with physical disabilities.