Lowest level of new Covid-19 cases seen in 11 weeks

As of midnight on November 28, the HSPC had been notified of 299 new cases, compared to a high of 1,025 new cases reported on Sunday, October 18
Lowest level of new Covid-19 cases seen in 11 weeks

Chief medical officer Dr Tony Holohan had warned progress in fighting the virus had 'stalled' in one of the last formal statements from Nphet.

Two more people have died after testing positive for Covid-19.

With less than 24 hours to go before Level Five restrictions are lifted, the latest Health Protection Surveillance Centre figures show the lowest level of new cases for 11 weeks.

As of midnight, Saturday, November 28, the HSPC had been notified of 299 new cases.

This compares with a high in the past 11 weeks of 1,025 new cases reported on Sunday, October 18 and 396 new cases reported on Sunday, September 20.

On a positive note for Cork, the latest figures show the lowest number of new cases for the county since September.

Then they had crept up from less than five at the start of September to 54 by Sunday, September 27, and they reached a high of 156 new cases by October 18.

However, now they stand at less than 13.

Although the number of people being treated in hospital with Covid-19 is down to 257 from a high in 11 weeks of 320, it is not a huge difference in the number being treated at any one time in the past two months.

And the number in intensive care units is also about the same.

Sunday, it was 30 but it was also 30 on October 11.

In one of the last formal statements from the National Public Health Emergency Team, Dr Tony Holohan had warned progress in fighting the virus had “stalled”.

In a November 19 statement, the chief medical officer urged people to “drive down the disease” by limiting their number of daily contacts.

He urged people to follow public health advice to get the country to a virus reproduction number — the rate of how many people a person with Covid-19 infects others — of “below 0.5" by Tuesday.

However, that does not appear to have been reached.

At a briefing just three days ago, the HSE’s chief clinical officer Dr Colm Henry said the figure had — in effect — stalled.

It was somewhere between 0.7 and 0.9 for the second week in a row.

Taoiseach Micheál Martin announced last Friday the country will move to Level 3, with a few exceptions in place over Christmas.

From December 1, hotels, guesthouses, B&Bs may open with services limited to residents only.

In addition, non-essential retail and personal services may reopen.

The reopening of retail will see more than 30,000 people return to work.

However, people should continue to work from home unless absolutely necessary to attend in person.

From December 4, restaurants and pubs operating as restaurants and serving a substantial meal, may reopen for indoor dining with additional restrictions.

Higher, further and adult education should, the government says, however, remain primarily online.

From December 18 to January 6, households can mix with up to two other households and travel outside your county to be permitted.

In his TV address to the country last Friday, Mr Martin said: “We are trusting business owners, and we are trusting their customers.

“We all have individual personal responsibility.

"The best way we all can show our appreciation for their work is by doing your part to reduce community transmission.”

In a major blow to wet pubs, he said there was no evidence to support reopening them. "There's only so far we can safely go,” he said.

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