Laois has 19 new cases of Covid-19, according to today’s figures, with an incidence rate of 174.
As of midnight Saturday 19th December, the Health Protection Surveillance Centre has been notified of 764 confirmed cases of COVID-19. There has now been a total of 79,542 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Ireland.
Of the cases notified today 284 were in Dublin, 70 in Limerick, 52 in Donegal, 44 in Cork, 37 in Wexford and the remaining 277 cases are spread across another 20 counties.
The 14 Day Incidence Rate for Ireland now stands at 112.2 with 12 counties above that mark. Donegal continues to have the highest rate in the country at 263.8.
As of 2pm today 233 COVID-19 patients are hospitalised, of which 29 are in ICU. 15 additional hospitalisations in the past 24 hours.
The Health Protection Surveillance Centre has today been notified of four additional deaths related to COVID-19.
There has been a total of 2,158 COVID-19 related deaths in Ireland.
Dr Tony Holohan, Chief Medical Officer, the Department of Health said, “Every indicator of disease severity is moving in the wrong direction, more rapidly than we had anticipated. We have particularly strong concerns about the prospect of inter-generational mixing around the festive season. On 11th December the 7-day incidence rate for people aged 19-44 was 106 per 100,000 population, by yesterday this rate had more than doubled to 217 per 100,000.
“If these younger people come into contact with their loved ones over the age of 65, we could see a spike in infections in this more vulnerable group. This would lead to very a serious pattern of disease, hospitalisations, ICU admissions and unnecessary deaths.”
“If you have been socialising in the past few weeks or over this weekend, consider your Christmas plans carefully. Is it responsible to meet with your family over 65 later this week, if you have not kept your contacts low? Should you cancel your plans?
“We have the very real prospect of COVID-19 vaccines on the horizon. Ensure that your loved ones stay alive to receive them, by keeping your distance from them if you have not restricted your movements to this point. As difficult as it may seem, staying away from older family this Christmas will protect them - and it would be an exceptional sacrifice made for the common good.”