Covid-19 LATEST: 'Overall situation has improved' reports Dr Holohan - new case still emerge in Laois

Dr Holohan cautions 'it is early days yet'

Conor Ganly

Reporter:

Conor Ganly

Email:

news@leinsterexpress.ie

coronavirus covid-19

Coronavirus cases in Laois

A further 11 cases of Covid-19 have been identified in Laois and the incidence of the virus has increased slightly in the county but Ireland's Chief Medical Officer and the Head of the National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET) has said the overall situation has improved.

While Dr Tony Holohan, who demanded Level 5 in early October, said the 'the overall situation has improved' he cautioned that it is still 'early days'. 

The NPHET daily report for Friday, October 30 shows that the new cases confirmed in Laois bring the total in the county to 807 the number official cases in the county since late February. 

The incidence in Laois of cases over the past 14 days, rose slight according to the new figures to 233.8 per 100,000 people.

The report was issued on the day when the Irish Prison Service confirmed five new cases at the Midlands Prison in Portlaoise. READ MORE.

Nationally, NPHET confirmed that six more people have died with the disease in Ireland. There has been a total of 1,908 COVID-19 related deaths in Ireland.

As of midnight Thursday, October 29 NPHET also said that Health Protection Surveillance Centre (HSPC) has been notified of 772 confirmed cases of COVID-19 around Ireland. There is now a total of 61,059* confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Ireland. Ten cases were denotified.

The 14-day incidence for Ireland has fallen further to 287.1 cases per 100k population. This is on the back of more than 13,600 cases in the past two weeks. 

However, a lot more will have to be achieved to suppress the virus again. NPHET says the lowest national 14-day incidence rate was on July 3 when the rate was 2.98 cases per 100,000 population.

NPHET highlighted increases in the following counties: 228 in Dublin, 120 in Cork, 50 in Meath, 41 in Donegal, 41 in Galway.

The remaining 292 cases are spread across all remaining counties. SEE TABLE AT END OF STORY.

NPHET also reports that as of 2pm today 325 COVID-19 patients are hospitalised, of which 42 are in ICU. 15 additional hospitalisations in the past 24 hours.

Dr. Tony Holohan, Chief Medical Officer, Department of Health, insisted on Level 5 two weeks before the Government gave the green light. He indicated an improvement.

“The overall situation has improved, but we have to remember that these are very early days. This improvement will only be maintained if we keep going in our efforts.

“We have to remember that incidence is increasing in older age groups, who are particularly vulnerable to this disease. The way in which we can protect them is if we continue to drive down transmission across the whole population.”

Dr Desmond Hickey, Deputy Chief Medical Officer, Department of Health said the incidence has fallen in the past week.

“As of today, Ireland has seen a reduction in its 7-day incidence rate of 36% when compared to the previous 7 days. Ireland’s progress is notable when compared to the rapidly deteriorating picture across Europe. It is paramount that we sustain and continue to drive down disease incidence as much as possible in the coming weeks.”

Professor Philip Nolan, Chair of the NPHET Irish Epidemiological Modelling Advisory Group, said the key R rate has also decreased for the first time in weeks.

“The reproduction number is now close to 1.0 nationally. This is the first time in a number of weeks that we have been able to report positive indicators of the disease. However, our experience to date shows this type of progress is very fragile. We should take these positive signs as an indication our efforts are starting to work, the critical thing now is to keep it up, the virus will seek out any opportunity to spread; over the next weeks let’s make sure we don’t give it that opportunity, by driving R and case numbers as low as possible.”

Dr Colm Henry, Chief Clinical Officer, HSE, said reminded people who are ill  to go to hospital.

“There has been a significant reduction in emergency presentations and admission in recent weeks, when compared with activity last year. Our Emergency Departments have in place pathways of care to keep patients and staff safe. If you need urgent or emergency care in our hospitals, this care can be provided safely,” he said.

Of the cases notified today;

309 are men / 364 are women
65% are under 45 years of age
The median age is 35 years old

MORE COUNTY BY COUNTY FIGURES IN TABLE.

The COVID-19 Dashboard provides up-to-date information on the key indicators of COVID-19 in the community.