DEPUTY chief medical officer Dr Ronan Glynn has urged people to get vaccinated against Covid-19, comparing it to wearing a seatbelt in a car.
It comes amid concerns that the vaccine doesn't completely prevent a person from getting infected, following news that one in five people in Ireland with the virus have received both of their jabs.
Dr Glynn insists that in spite of these 'breakthrough cases', the vaccine is still extremely effective at preventing infection and serious illness, even though it isn't "100% protective".
He explained that a small proportion of fully vaccinated individuals will still get Covid-19, and possibly get very sick from it, "however, the individual risk of a severe illness or death is much lower than if they had not been vaccinated."
"A good way to think about this is in relation to road safety - the majority of people who die on our roads are wearing a safety belts. This does not mean that safety belts don't work," Dr Glynn added.
"It simply reflects the fact that the vast majority of people wear safety belts when driving and, unfortunately, some will be involved in accidents. However, for each individual, the risk of a severe injury or dying in that accident is much lower if they are wearing a safety belt."
He also claimed that as more people in the country get vaccinated, the likelihood of a high proportion of Covid-19 cases being identified in fully vaccinated people will inevitably increase.
"For example, if all of the population were to get vaccinated then, clearly, 100% of Covid-19 cases would be in those who had been vaccinated," said Dr Glynn.
"This does not mean that vaccines are not working."