Darker shaded areas show where virus is more prevalent
The incidence of Covid-19 has dipped in Laois in the past seven days due in party to slowing in Portlaoise which, nevertheless, continues to have one of the highest incidence in the country.
Portlaoise had the second highest incidence of the virus in Ireland according to the weekly pandemic breakdown of the disease incidence in local areas around the country in the two weeks to December 13.
The latest Local Electoral Area (LEA) figures published on December 23 show the virus incidence and new infections from December 7 to 20.
The Portlaoise area incidence decrease is also matched by falls in the Graiguecullen / Portarlington Municipal District and the Borris-in-Ossory / Mountmellick area. Only Portlaoise now has a higher incidence of the disease than the national average 1,344.3 per 100,000 population.
The Covid-19 Ireland data hub figures, which are based on health service confirmed positive tests, show 577 new cases to December 20. This is down from 665 new cases in the Portlaoise LEA in the 14 days to December 13.
The incidence has dropped as a result. It is now 1814.8 per 100k per population down from 2091.6 per 100 k to December 13.
The electoral area continues to have one of the worst incidences in the country though there is an improvement from the first two weeks of December.
The population of the Portlaoise LEA is 31,794 people with more than 20,000 living in the county town environs. It includes Abbeyleix, Ballyroan and Ballinakill. It borders Kilkenny.
The latest figures from the Portarlington Graiguecullen LEA reveal also reveal a decreasing incidence. There were 372 new cases in the two weeks to December 20 giving an incidence of 1324 per 100k population.
There were 417 in the two weeks to December 13 giving an incidence of 1484.2 per 100 k.
The population in this LEA is 28,096. Apart from the two big towns the district includes Stradbally, Timahoe, Ballylinan, Ballyadams, Killeshin, Crettyard, Killenard, Ballybrittas. It borders Kildare, Carlow, Kilkenny and Offaly.
The incidence has also gone down in the Mountmellick / Borris-in-Ossory LEA. There were two 257 new cases in the district in the 14 days measured. This produced an incidence of 1036 per 100 k.
It's an improvement on the two weeks to December 13 when there were two 279 new cases in the district which produced an incidence of 1124.7 per 100 k.
There were 250 new cases in the fortnight to December 6. This gave an incidence of 1007.8 per 100k.
With 24,807 people it includes Rathdowney, Mountrath, Durrow, Castletown, Camross, Errill, Clonaslee and Rosenallis. It borders Tipperary, Offaly and Kilkenny.
The Health Protection Surveillance Centre (HPSC) tracks the spread of the disease on a daily basis for NPHET. Latest figures show that Laois is one of the few counties were less than half of the new cases confirmed in the past two weeks merged in the past seven days.
There were 545 new cases in the past seven days which is nearly 49% of the two week total to midnight December 21 of 1,115. An average of 75 new cases are being detected every day in Laois.
Laois now has the eleventh highest incidence of the disease in the country in the HPSC county by county table.
NPHET says day to day variation in the reported number of cases of COVID-19 does not impact on key trend analysis. It says analysing over a longer time period such as a week or 14 days, smooths out any variations introduced by processing times, and provides a more stable picture of the trend.
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