Over 1,000 Covid-19 cases confirmed in Irish meat plants

Meat processing plants had the highest number of Covid-19 cases out of a number of ‘at-risk’ settings being monitored by health officials, figures furnished by the National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET) show.
Over 1,000 Covid-19 cases confirmed in Irish meat plants
Meat processing plans accounted for the highest number of coronavirus cases in settings classified as 'at-risk' by NPHET. Photo: iStock

Meat processing plants had the highest number of Covid-19 cases out of a number of ‘at-risk’ settings being monitored by health officials, figures furnished by the National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET) show.

A further three people have died from Covid-19, bringing the total number of fatalities across the country to 1,659, it was confirmed at the Wednesday briefing of NPHET.

A further 47 cases of the infectious disease were also confirmed bringing the total number of Covid-19 cases in Ireland to 25,111.

Deputy Chief Medical Officer Dr Ronan Glynn further confirmed there were 1,048 Covid-19 cases in meat processing plants as of last Saturday, following an increase of 123 in the past week.

Over that time, the number of cases in Direct Provision increased by three to 176, while the number of cases in homeless residential facilities rose by nine to 34, he confirmed.

The number of cases among the Roma community increased by 8 to 30 and the number of cases among the Traveller community remained stable at 64.

A total of 31 people were hospitalised across these settings in the past week.

There were no new deaths across any of the 'at risk' settings being monitored, Dr Glynn said.

On Thursday NPHET will meet to consider easing restrictions in the second phase of Covid-19 exit strategy next week, including easing restrictions impacting children and nursing homes.

Dr Tony Holohan, Chief Medical Officer, Department of Health, stressed there were a number of days to go before NPHET will make recommendations: “Week 3 in the three-week cycle is the important week and we’re keeping a very close eye on the figures.”

Meanwhile Inclusion Ireland has called for the introduction of a Covid-19 fund to support people with intellectual disabilities and their families.

Health Minister Simon Harris confirmed that 14 people have died from Covid-19 in disability services.

The virus caused outbreaks in 25% of disability services, with 650 people being identified with Covid-19 symptoms, of which 57% were staff and 43% were residents.

Inclusion Ireland also called on the Department of Health to publish a Capacity Review into Disability Services.

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