BURTONPORT Covid Vaccine Centre should remain open as a testing centre for people in west Donegal, according to local Councillor Noreen McGarvey.
The centre, located at St Columba’s Community Centre, closed its doors for the last time on Thursday after being in operation for just six weeks.
Cllr McGarvey said that she was ‘disappointed’ to learn that the newly opened vaccination centre was to finish up.
The Fianna Fáil representative said that she had contacted the Minister for Health earlier this year to get a Covid testing centre into the area. She said local GPs and pharmacies had done ‘great work’ in helping to administer the vaccine but were not in a position to carry out testing.
“The centre began administering only some six weeks ago, however most of the people in the area would have already been vaccinated by then apart from the 12-15 age group.
“I was also hopeful that they would be in a position to offer the booster injections when the programme was rolled out. Earlier in the year I had contacted the Minister for Health to get a vaccination into the area but more importantly a COVID testing centre.
“For people in the West of the county, they have to travel to either Letterkenny or Donegal Town to get a test done. This will be a minimum of a three hour return trip for some. At a time when the Covid numbers are rising I would be urging the Minister and the HSE to perhaps turn the centre into a testing centre for a number of weeks when they have already set up the premises to a high standard,” Cllr Mc Garvey said.
“I also wish to commend the local committee of St Columba’s Community Centre for providing the building and the work they have done to date within the centre.” she added.