There are now 24 confirmed cases of Covid-19 in Ireland
Three additional cases of Covid-19 have been confirmed in Ireland – bringing the total number of confirmed cases to 24.
In an update this Monday evening, the Health Protection Surveillance Centre stated that one of the new cases relates to a female in the west of the country and is associated with close contact with a confirmed case.
Another of the newly confirmed cases relates to a female in the south of the country and is also associated with close contact with a confirmed case.
The third case, which has been confirmed, relates to a female healthcare worker in the south of the country. Again that case is associated with close contact with a confirmed case.
The HSE says it is now working rapidly to identify any contacts the patients may have had, to provide them with information and advice to prevent further spread.
Speaking at a media briefing, Dr Tony Holahan, chief medical officer at the Department of Health, said Ireland remains in a containment phase but will eventually move to delay phase and then on to mitigation phase.
“Containment is about identifying and containing all cases no matter how mild. The delay phase will focus on minimising the spread of the virus. Ultimately, in mitigation phase, we prioritise the cases that are most unwell. The decision to move to delay phase will be based on a number of factors, including the amount of confirmed cases in Ireland, speed at which they are occurring and the profile of transmission. Ultimately all of the decisions we take are focused on limiting the impact of this disease on our population and our health service.”
Dr. Ronan Glynn, deputy chief medical officer at the Department of Health added:
“We are particularly aware that older people may have additional concerns and worries about the spread of this disease. To ensure they have access to the information they need Alone has established an information helpline at 0818 222 024. This is a time for solidarity and community. We urge everyone to reach out to older family and friends, to ensure they have the appropriate advice and information. Protect your loved ones by not visiting if you feel unwell, with respiratory symptoms or fever.
Earlier, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar confirmed the Government was recommending that St Patrick’s Day parades across the country be cancelled in the interests of public health and safety.
The decision was announced following a meeting of a cabinet sub-committee which is dealing with the Covid-19 situation.
We've agreed the next phase of Ireland’s response to the public health emergency arising from Covid-19, including:— Leo Varadkar (@LeoVaradkar) March 9, 2020
➡️€2.4bn package of reforms for sick pay, illness benefit & supplementary benefit
➡️€200m in liquidity funding for businesses
➡️€435m in extra HSE funding
Meanwhile, the UL Hospitals Group has confirmed the cancellation of almost all elective surgeries and outpatient appointments across its six sites is to be extended to Wednesday.
A visitor ban remains in place at University Hospital Limerick, University Maternity Hospital Limerick, and Ennis, Nenagh, St John’s and Croom Hospitals.
A number of patients who have contracted Covid-19 remain in isolation at UHL.