Covid-19: More Laois Covid-19 cases with Ireland at highest infection rate in the world

Lynda Kiernan

Reporter:

Lynda Kiernan

Email:

news@leinsterexpress.ie

coronavirus covid-19

Coronavirus cases in Laois

New cases of Covid-19 in Laois have soared again today, with Ireland now having the highest infection rate in the world.

There have been 63 new cases in Laois reported this Monday, according to the latest figures from the National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET) which reported nearly 5,000 more new cases as the third wave continues to surge.

NPHET's daily update on Monday, January 11 shows the 63 new cases in Laois by midnight, Sunday, January 10. The new cases mean that the incidence in Laois is now 911.1 per 100,000 population on the back of 772 new cases in the past 14 days.

There have now been a total of 2,004 cases in Laois since February 2020. More than a third, or 777, of the officially confirmed cases in Laois during the entire pandemic, have emerged in Laois since Christmas Day. 

The daily figure contrasts with just six new cases emerging on Friday but 102 yesterday for Laois.

Ireland was shown to have the highest rate of infection in the world last week. Read more here. 

Across Ireland, the Health Protection Surveillance Centre has today been notified of 8 additional deaths related to COVID-19. There has been a total of 2,352 COVID-19 related deaths in Ireland.

As of midnight, Sunday 10th January, the HPSC has been notified of 4,929 more confirmed cases of COVID-19. There is now a total of 152,539* confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Ireland.

The backlog cases in Ireland since Christmas have now been dealt with according to Professor Philip Nolan, and 80% of the cases reported today are swabs taken in the last three days. Over the last 5 days the daily the average case count has stabilised. Positive swabs have stabilised at around 5,000 per day since January 2.

The national incidence is now 1378.7 per 100 k on the back of 65,650 new cases in just two weeks. However Laois now ranks fourth best in Ireland for having the lowest 14 day incidence. SEE TABLE AT END OF STORY. 

The situation is going to get worse before it improves, Dr Tony Holohan, Chief Medical Officer, Department of Health said today.

“While we are seeing the first glimmer of hope in respect of our daily case figures and positivity rates, the situation in hospitals and ICUs around the country continues to worsen day on day. We know that hospitalisations occur some weeks after a confirmed case is notified, and mortality after that again. That means we are unfortunately set for a period of time where the situation in our hospitals gets worse before it gets better.”

“The best way forward now is for all of us to stay at home. Staying at home and cutting your contacts right down to only those in your immediate household is the one vital way we will protect our healthcare system as it struggles with the burdens brought on by this surge in COVID-19 infections," Dr Holohan said.

Of the cases notified today NPHET highlighted 1,513 in Dublin, 695 in Cork, 320 in Limerick, 305 in Wexford, 225 in Galway. The remaining 1,871 cases are spread across all other counties. COUNTY BREAKDOWN IN TABLE AT END OF STORY.

It also noted that of the new cases 2,250 are men / 2,641 are women, 59% are under 45 years of age while the median age is 39 years old.

As of 2pm Sunday, 1,582 COVID-19 patients are hospitalised, of which 146 are in ICU. 156 additional hospitalisations in the past 24 hours.

Dr Michael Power, HSE Clinical Lead for Intensive Care gave the ICU update today.

 “Over the past weeks, we have seen a swift and sharp spike in admissions into critical care units across the country. As of this morning, we have 146 people sadly in ICU. This is nearing the springtime peak of 155 people in critical care. The potential long-term impacts on these patients’ health is stark and significant. ICUs are not where we want anyone to be. They are our very last line of defence against COVID-19. The best way we can protect our ICU capacity and those that work in them is to stay at home.”

Professor Philip Nolan, Chair of the NPHET Irish Epidemiological Modelling Advisory Group said staying at home for the next week is vital.

"The alarming level of disease is unprecedented in terms of our experience of the levels of COVID-19 in the community. We are seeing numbers of cases per day, and numbers in hospital, that we just could not have comprehended prior to Christmas. The tools to address this accelerated growth rate are in our hands and we know from experience how we can significantly suppress transmission of the virus.

“We are beginning to see the first signs of the impact of the latest public health measures, with test positivity falling and case numbers starting to stabilise, but this will only continue if every one of us is committed to following the public health advice to stay at home and work from home as much as possible. This is vital in order to make significant headway over the next 7 days and to reduce the pressure on our health services and healthcare colleagues”.

Dr Cillian De Gascun, Medical Virologist and Director of the National Virus Reference Laboratory gave the latest on the UK variant of Covid-19 in Ireland.

“Further testing of COVID-19 samples indicates that the UK variant continues to account for an increasing number of cases– more than 40% of the positive cases tested in the last 7 days can be traced back to this variant. The greater risk of infection posed by this new variant increases the risk of transmission of the disease in the community. Now, more than ever, there is an urgent need for vigilance in our individual response to the disease, which is spread through close proximity to others. This virus cannot spread when households do not mix together, when social gatherings do not occur and when people stay at home for all but essential reasons.”

Professor Karina Butler, Chair of the National Immunisation Advisory Committee said vaccines are rolling out.

“The roll out of the COVID-19 vaccine programme is underway. The recent authorisation of the 2nd COVID-19 vaccine for Europe, Moderna, and the latest news on the Astra Zeneca approval process gives us cause for hope for rapid community vaccination against COVID-19 in coming months. Every time we wash our hands, wear a face covering and keep a two metre distance from others, we are protecting the most vulnerable in our society and our frontline healthcare workers and giving all of us much needed additional time for more vaccines to be administered.”


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

*Validation of data at the HPSC has resulted in the denotification of 3 confirmed cases. The figure of 152,539 confirmed cases reflects this.