Online registration for the Covid vaccine has opened to people aged 34.
The Minister for Health, Stephen Donnelly, confirmed on Tuesday that people in the 30 to 34 age group will be able to register online for an mRNA vaccine from Wednesday.
Mr Donnelly said that appointments will follow in a few days, with the first vaccinations for this group next week.
The portal had been due to open this Friday but was brought forward.
Registration for a COVID-19 vaccine is now open for everyone ag 34 - 69.
In addition pharmacies can offer a Janssen vaccine by appointment to those age 18-34 pic.twitter.com/YRks4iOHEB
— Stephen Donnelly (@DonnellyStephen) July 7, 2021
It comes as HSE chief Paul Reid confirmed that more than half the adult population were now fully vaccinated against Covid.
Some 69 per cent of the adult population have received their first dose.
More than 100,000 jabs have been administered so far this week, and Mr Reid said almost 4.5 million doses will have been administered in the Republic by the end of Wednesday.
Correction, apologies, almost 4.5M vaccines in total by today Too early for all of those figures!
— Paul Reid (@paulreiddublin) July 7, 2021
On Tuesday, the Department of Health reported an additional 397 confirmed Covid cases in the Republic.
The latest figures show 54 people in hospitals with the disease, including 16 in intensive care units.
Dr Tony Holohan, chief medical officer, said: “We are seeing a small but concerning increase in hospitalisations in recent days, coming 10-14 days after the five-day moving average of daily case numbers began to increase.
“This is a cause for concern and we will be monitoring it closely in the days and weeks ahead.
“Full vaccination is needed to protect against Covid-19, including the Delta variant.
“To protect yourselves and your loved ones, it is extremely important to take up the opportunity of being vaccinated and come forward for your second dose as soon as it is offered to you.
“The second vaccination is very effective at preventing both disease and hospitalisation.”