BREAKING: Notable spike in Covid cases in Limerick as R number nationwide is estimated to be 'well below one'

BREAKING: Notable spike in Covid cases in Limerick as R number nationwide is estimated to be 'well below one'

THERE has been a notable increase in the number of Covid-19 cases reported in Limerick this Thursday evening with 77 confirmed cases, compared to 17 on Wednesday evening.

And, sadly, the Health Protection Surveillance Centre has today been notified of 75 additional deaths related to Covid-19 across the country.

46 of these deaths occurred in February, 27 occurred in January, 2 were earlier.

The median age of those who died is 84 years and the age range is 34-100 years.

As of midnight, Wednesday, the HPSC has been notified of 1,318 confirmed cases of Covid-19 in the state. Of the cases notified today:

622 are men / 688 are women
58% are under 45 years of age
The median age is 40 years old
428 in Dublin, 122 in Cork, 93 in Galway, 78 in Kildare, 77 in Limerick and the remaining 520 cases are spread across all other counties.

As of 2pm today, 1,284 Covid-19 patients are hospitalised, of which 188 are in ICU. There have been 74 additional hospitalisations in the past 24 hours.


Dr Tony Holohan, Chief Medical Officer, Department of Health said: “We know that the over 70s have suffered the greatest burden of mortality and serious illness from Covid-19. Ireland is now in a good position; we can now offer highly effective and safe vaccines to this cohort.”


“The superior efficacy demonstrated by the mRNA vaccines authorised for use in Ireland, Pfizer BioNTech and Moderna mean that the mRNA vaccines are the right vaccine to provide the highest level of protection available to those over 70.”


“Over the coming weeks, we will see many more of our vulnerable loved ones receive their Covid-19 vaccinations. This is good news and gives all of us great hope. However, even if you have received your Covid-19 vaccine, you must continue to wash your hands, wear a face covering, maintain a social distance and keep your close contacts to a minimum. Until we have all been vaccinated, we must act as though none of us have been vaccinated.”

Dr Lucy Jessop, Director, National Immunisation Office: “The NIO works with colleagues across the HSE and in primary care to administer millions of vaccines every year. We are using our vast expertise and experience to deliver the Covid-19 Vaccination Programme safely and securely.”


“My colleagues and I in the National Immunisation Office are continuing to work hard to finalise our preparations, ensuring we are ready to administer safe and effective vaccines to the most vulnerable in our society as they are called for vaccination”.


Dr Ronan Glynn, Deputy Medical Officer, Department of Health, said: “Today we have reached another significant and unwelcome milestone as we report more than 200,000 confirmed cases. We must all redouble our efforts and drive down the incidence of disease in our community.”


“We are noticing a clear pattern in people with symptoms delaying contacting their GP to arrange a test. It is vital that as soon as you notice that you have symptoms of Covid-19 that you isolate and contact your GP immediately. By acting quickly, we can prevent the spread of Covid-19 and protect our vulnerable loved ones.”


Professor Philip Nolan, Chair of the NPHET Irish Epidemiological Modelling Advisory Group, said: “The next few weeks will be difficult for all of us, as we bring the daily case levels below 1,000 per day, our progress will seem to slow down. It is now more important than ever that we continue our efforts to bring case numbers down towards the very low levels we achieved in June and July. In that regard, it is very good news that our estimates of the R number are well below one – in the region of 0.5 – 0.8.”


“I noted last week that the testing of close contacts will impact on case numbers in the coming days. We shouldn’t be disappointed by this, it shows that we have moved from the mitigation phase of the last few weeks, back to the containment phase where we are tracking down every possible chain of transmission.”

Buy the e-paper of the Donegal Democrat, Donegal People's Press, Donegal Post and Inish Times here for instant access to Donegal's premier news titles.

Keep up with the latest news from Donegal with our daily newsletter featuring the most important stories of the day delivered to your inbox every evening at 5pm.