Irish healthcare worker denied booster vaccine as HSE won't declassify false positive Covid-19 test result - like it did for Eamon Ryan

By Ciara Phelan

A healthcare worker is being denied a booster vaccine because the HSE won’t declassify a false positive Covid result - but did so for Green Party leader Eamon Ryan.

Emma Treacy, 34, who works in a Dublin hospital, claims she had a false positive Covid result after being determined as a close contact of a confirmed case.

She received a positive Covid test on November 5.

But between November 5 and November 8, she had two negative PCR tests and multiple negative antigen tests.

Booster jabs can’t be given to people until six months following a positive Covid-19 test.

Speaking to the Irish Mirror, the mother-of-two said: “I work in a hospital and I was due to get my booster vaccine in two weeks but now I’m classified as ineligible for the booster because of a false positive Covid-19 result.

“I was notified as a close contact of a confirmed case and I got tested along with my husband and two sons who came back negative.

“My test came back positive but I had no symptoms and just knew it wasn’t right because my husband and sons would have been in more contact with the confirmed case.

“I took a private PCR test and a second HSE PCR test and both came back negative just two days after the initial positive test.

“Despite this, I restricted my movements and had been out of work and I explained to the HSE the situation but they said they will deem me positive regardless because it was safer to do so.

“At this point it was in the media about Minister Eamon Ryan having a false positive and that he was able to be declassified and his close contacts told the same so he could travel to Glasgow.

“That really infuriated me that they were able to do it for a minister but the HSE told me there was nothing they could do for me.”

Minister Eamon Ryan was allowed to fly to COP26 in Glasgow after a second Covid-19 test came back as negative despite an initial test stating he was positive.

Minister Ryan said at the time the details of the first test had actually been inconclusive. But even in those circumstances, you get a positive HSE reading.

Ms Treacy said her workplace requested she contact the HSE about the issue but was told by the HSE that there was nothing they could do for her.

She said: “Mistakes happen and I know the great work that the HSE are doing but if an error is made, please acknowledge it and don’t prevent someone from getting their booster jab.

“They can do it for someone to leave the country to travel but you can’t do it for a healthcare worker who wants a vaccine and they’re screaming out for people to go out and get the vaccine.

“I had the conversation with my GP who said he’s speaking to people every day that won’t get the vaccine and here I am pleading to get mine.

“It’s just shocking in this country. I’m a very private person and I feel I’ve no other option but to go public about this.”

The Irish Mirror contacted the HSE several times for comment.

Sinn Fein TD Matt Carthy said the HSE needed to immediately resolve the issue.

He said: “This is an utter shambles. The HSE were quick to facilitate a Cabinet Minister to travel to Scotland - they now need to immediately resolve this issue that has arisen to ensure that a front line worker receives the booster vaccine.

“Anything else would be double standards in the extreme.”


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