Laois people urged by Minister to 'behave' as if Level 5 lockdown is in force

TD appeals to local people after three people die in a nursing home

Conor Ganly

Reporter:

Conor Ganly

Email:

news@leinsterexpress.ie

coronavirus covid-19

Sean Fleming TD and Minister of State at the Department of Finance

Laois people must begin to behave as if they are living in a Level 5 lockdown, according to Laois Offaly TD and Minister for State Seán Fleming.

The Fianna Fáil TD has issued a plea to the public following the deaths of three residents of the Kilminchy Lodge Nursing Home in Portlaoise.

“All in all it is vital that everybody in Laois and throughout the country wear a mask at all possible times.

“We should behave as if we are in a 'Level 5' situation in terms of how careful we are in restricting our movements and ensuring that we always wear masks, observe social distancing and wash our hands on a very regular basis,” he said.

The Minister voiced the feelings of many who will have been saddened by the deaths of three people at the home in Portlaoise.

“I wish to express my sincere sympathy to the families of the residents who have passed away in Kilminchy Lodge Nursing Home, Portlaoise following an outbreak of COVID-19 in the nursing home. It is very sad to hear that 3 people have passed away with COVID and 2 are still in hospital at this time” said Minister Fleming.

“I understand that 22 residents in the nursing home have tested positive for COVID19 and are all in isolation. 16 staff have also tested positive and are on COVID leave and are self-isolating for the next two weeks.

“I understand that everybody in the nursing home will be tested again tomorrow, Tuesday. In the meantime, agency staff have been brought in to look after those residents who are now currently in isolation in the nursing home. Obviously, these agency staff are being tested as well as the permanent staff in the area.

“This is a sad reminder to everybody here in Laois following the 9 people who died from COVID19 in the Maryborough Suite in St. Fintan’s Hospital, Portlaoise last April," he said.

Figures from the Health Protection Surveillance Centre show that the rate of infection in Laois has risen to 133 per 100,000.
This is on the back of 113 cases between September 27 and October 10. The incidence in Laois has risen consistently since the end of September.

In the past week, the rate of spread in the county rose higher than Kildare. The rate is below Offaly and behind the national level of 158.5 per 100k.