1,978 Covid cases confirmed with infection rates 'rising across all age groups'

1,978 Covid cases confirmed with infection rates 'rising across all age groups'

Deputy chief medical officer Ronan Glynn warned of rising Covid infection levels this evening. File picture: Collins 

Deputy chief medical officer (CMO), Dr Ronan Glynn, has warned of increased Covid-19 infection levels across the county and said public health officials have confirmed nearly 10,000 cases this week. 

The deputy CMO identified infection incident rates in Donegal, Monaghan, Mayo, Galway, Roscommon, Louth and Cavan as very high but said: "incidence is rising across all 26 counties".

Dr Glynn added that while case numbers had been rising in the 16-29 age cohort, infection rates are "now rising across all age groups".

His warning comes as dDpartment of Health Officials have confirmed nearly 2,000 cases of Covid-19 this evening. 1,978 cases of the coronavirus were identified this evening while 221 patients are hospitalised with the virus. 43 of these people are receiving treatment in intensive care (ICU). 

No data was published today on Covid-related deaths as this is now produced on a weekly basis but on Wednesday, August 11, 5,059 Covid-related deaths were reported in total since the outbreak began. 

The Department of Health has said case data is subject to future validation. 

Although praising the vaccine's impact, Dr Glynn made a direct comparison to the second wave experienced in October last year in his warning about rising patient numbers in ICU. 

"While vaccination has very positively impacted on the proportion of positive cases who end up in hospital or critical care, the current high and increasing incidence will nevertheless result in a significant number of people getting very sick with Covid-19. 

"At the peak of the second wave in October we had 47 people in critical care. Today we have 43, with 8 new admissions in the last 24 hours," he said.

Dr Glynn said that while vaccines work "they must also be supported by all of us continuing to follow the public health advice" in order to reduce the spread of Covid-19. 

He urged the public to social distance, manage their contacts and avoid crowds where possible and reminded people with Covid-19 symptoms to isolate and arrange a test. 

If you are in an environment that feels unsafe then leave. 

"Remember that if you have any cold or flu like symptoms at all, self-isolate - do not meet up with others or go to work - and arrange a test," he said. 

Vaccine registration

It comes as the HSE has confirmed more than 71,000 children aged 12 to 15 were registered for their Covid-19 vaccine since the portal opened late on Wednesday evening.

The online vaccine portal opened ahead of schedule Picture: istock
The online vaccine portal opened ahead of schedule Picture: istock

The figure comes as HSE chief executive Paul Reid said that, by this weekend, 90% of adults will be partially vaccinated, and 80% will be fully vaccinated.

The vaccination portal opened for teenagers ahead of schedule on Wednesday evening, with the first vaccines due to be administered to this cohort over the weekend.

42,000 registered by mid-morning 

By mid-morning on Thursday, more than 42,000 children had registered, with the number growing to more than 50,000 by 4pm, representing almost 18% of this age group.

Mr Reid said the HSE was “pleasantly surprised” by the high number of registrations in the hours after the portal went live.

Dr Lucy Jessop, director of the National Immunisation Office, said uptake is "extremely high" among young people, adding that the programme has been challenging but "extremely successful".

Paul Reid, CEO, HSE and Dr Lucy Jessop, Director of Public Health at the National Immunisation Office (NIO) at Dr Steevens’ Hospital for the weekly HSE operational update on the response to Covid-19. Picture: Sam Boal / Photocall Ireland
Paul Reid, CEO, HSE and Dr Lucy Jessop, Director of Public Health at the National Immunisation Office (NIO) at Dr Steevens’ Hospital for the weekly HSE operational update on the response to Covid-19. Picture: Sam Boal / Photocall Ireland

Some 66% of 16 and 17-year-olds have registered since the portal opened for them on July 27, with 61% of them being partially vaccinated already.

Approximately 91% of the population over 16 have registered for their jab, while for the older populations, nearly 100% have registered for a Covid-19 vaccine.

Vaccine takeup puts Ireland in 'remarkable position'

Mr Reid said the country is now in a “remarkable position”.

“The vaccination campaign is definitely in the final leg of the programme and it’s being delivered safely and at pace, and with massive buy-in from the Irish population,” he said.

Importantly, after a horrendous 17 months of uncertainty and sometimes fear for people, the vaccination programme has served to facilitate the reopening of society, the economy and, equally important, it’s given the Irish people a strong level of pride, hope and indeed confidence. 

Meanwhile, a further 1,903 confirmed cases of Covid-19 were reported on Thursday.

Chief medical officer, Dr Tony Holohan, said vaccines protect against severe disease and hospitalisation.

“This protection against severe disease holds up even in the context of the Delta variant," he said. "Ireland’s vaccination programme is currently preventing at least 2,700 cases per week per million population."

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From florist to fraudster, leaving a trail of destruction from North Cork, to Waterford, to Clare, to Wexford and through the midlands ... learn how mistress of re-invention, Catherine O'Brien, scammed her way around rural Ireland.

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