The entrance to the Pfizer plant in Newbridge / PHOTO: AISHLING CONWAY
Pfizer is to begin offering the Pfizer/BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine to several employees at its Newbridge plant in coming days, it has emerged tonight.
The jabs, which are being given to "site-essential" staff, will not affect the supply being rolled out by the HSE as part of its vaccination programme.
Around 15,000 staff and contractors at Pfizer plants across the EU will receive the vaccine. Several hundred are employed in the Kildare facility.
"Pfizer has begun offering on-site vaccinations against Covid-19 to its site-essential employees, for example in manufacturing, who are critical to the vaccine effort and the continued supply of all Pfizer medicines.
"Ensuring supply of our medicines and continuation of critical research and development work across therapeutic areas, including cardiovascular disease and cancer, is a priority for global health, particularly given the current burden on health systems around the world as a result of COVID-19.
"Site-essential employees are those based at our manufacturing and R&D sites whose presence is required at a Pfizer location to ensure supply of our medicines and vaccines, the continuation of critical research and development programs, and to maintain and keep secure our labs and buildings.
"Vaccination of site-essential employees started this week at our manufacturing sites in Kalamazoo, Michigan, and Puurs, Belgium. We will expand to other Pfizer sites on a rolling basis. There are approximately 15,000 employees and contractors across Pfizer sites in the EU who are considered site-essential.
"The vaccine doses to be used for this program are separate and distinct from those committed by Pfizer to governments around the world and will not impact supply to national governments in any way," said the firm.