More than 30 residents of four Cork nursing homes and a community hospital in Kerry have died in just two weeks following Covid-19 outbreaks.
At West Kerry Community Hospital in Dingle, at least eight residents have died.
Between January 21 and January 26, eight residents of the Bon Secours Care Village, also known as Mount Desert, in Cork, have died, three of whom died on January 24.
Six residents of Amberley Nursing Home in Fermoy all died within days of each other over a 12-day period between January 18 and January 29.
As in other homes, some of the residents who died are believed to have received their first dose of a Covid-19 vaccine and were due to receive their booster shot.
In addition, six more residents of another nursing home dealing with a Covid outbreak have died over a four-day period.
Three residents of Deerpark House in Bantry died on January 27, while another died on January 29, and another the day after, on January 30.
Five residents of a fourth home have also died in recent weeks.
Gerry Condon, general manager of Amberley Home and Retirement Village in Fermoy, east Cork, said: “Our sincerest condolences are with the families of anybody who has died.
“Our staff have done everything possible to deal with the outbreak, and they have gone above and beyond.
“I have been humbled about the way they have risen to the challenge of doing their job at this time.
A spokesperson for Deerpark Nursing Home, Bantry, said: “We sadly confirm that we have had six Covid-19 related deaths of our residents in Deerpark Nursing Home.
“This has been very upsetting for everyone in our home and especially our residents’ loved ones.
“We extend our deepest sympathies to all their families and extended friends.
“We are in regular contact with the Department of Public Health Covid-19 Outbreak Control Team and have notified Hiqa from the outset.
“We are continuing to actively manage the outbreak, and are in constant contact with our residents’ families to keep them updated.
“Our residents remain our primary focus throughout this difficult time.”
A HSE spokesperson said: “It is with great sadness that we confirm that nine residents of West Kerry Community Hospital in Dingle have passed away in recent weeks, eight of whom were confirmed positive for Covid-19."