Covid-19: Three deaths and 1,066 cases as national 14-day incidence rate reaches new high

Of today's cases, 244 are in Dublin, 104 in Galway, 98 in Cork, 92 in Meath and there are 56 cases in both Cavan and Donegal.
Covid-19: Three deaths and 1,066 cases as national 14-day incidence rate reaches new high

The number of people in ICU is up three to 37.

The Health Protection Surveillance Centre (HSPC) has been notified of three additional Covid-related deaths.

The death toll in the Republic now stands at 1,871.

The HPSC has been notified of 1,066 new cases bringing the total number of confirmed cases to 54,476 following the denotification of 12 confirmed case.

Of today's cases, 244 are in Dublin, 104 in Galway, 98 in Cork, 92 in Meath and the remaining 528 are spread across all other counties.

The national 14-day incidence rate per 100,000 has exceeded 300 for the first time.

As of 2pm this afternoon, there are 313 Covid-19 patients in hospital with 20 of those admitted in the past 24 hours.

The number of people in ICU is up three to 37.

Chief Medical Officer, Dr Tony Holohan reminded people that the country has been placed under level 5 restrictions because the disease is at very serious levels in the country and is posing a "significant risk" to public health.

“We all need to stay at home, except for essential work and exceptional circumstances.

"If you are a confirmed case self isolate at home, if you are a close contact of a confirmed case restrict your movements at home, if you are experiencing symptoms or believe you are a close contact - restrict your movements and contact your GP.”

Deputy Chief Medical Officer, Dr Heather Burns said that the national 14-day incidence rate has increased significantly in recent months.

“The 14-day incidence was at 3 per 100,000 at the end of June, today it is 302 per 100,000 population.

The risk of you being exposed to Covid-19 is now 100 times greater than it was four months ago.

"Please limit your risk by staying at home and following public health advice.”

Nphet Chair Professor Philip Nolan said the reproduction number is at 1.3-1.4 nationally.

"Our collective goal now is to suppress transmission of the virus and bring our case numbers to manageable levels.

"If we work hard together to get the reproduction number to 0.5, we should succeed in reducing cases to below 100 a day in six weeks time.”

Chief Clinical Officer with the HSE, Dr Colm Henry, said every individual has a role to play in reducing community transmission and protecting vulnerable groups.

“Based on our experience, widespread community transmission results in spread to vulnerable groups in congregated settings.

The single most effective measure to protect vulnerable groups, including nursing homes, is to reduce community transmission significantly.

Today, the Taoiseach says he is "not of a mind" to introduce curfews as part of efforts to stop the spread of Covid 19.

Level 5 restrictions have come into place across the country today.

It means many shops have to close and people cannot travel more than 5 kilometres from their home unless it is for essential reasons.

Some cities around the world have introduced curfews to get people to stay at home.

Taoiseach Michael Martin says it is not being considered here at the moment.

"I don't see that. Other countries are doing things differently, before the curfew they would have activities that we won't be having.

"So I'm not of a mind to embrace that concept as of now but I'm always listening to the latest research."

Meanwhile, the HSE has said it will spend the next six weeks ensuring the contact tracing system is completely fit for purpose.

Between 65 and 75 new contact tracers will starting work each week over the coming period.

The HSE insists it has no intention to ask positive cases to do their own contact tracing again.

HSE Lead for testing and tracing Niamh O'Beirne says they simply did not have enough staff last weekend.

"What happened on August 8 is that we went from 500s straight into the thousands, that is when it triggered a real exponential growth.

"We had tracers that could do 800 of 900 calls per day but when that jumped and then started to continue to rise from that point we had to make some changes in terms of what we were doing."

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