‘Covid-19 has not gone away’ is Christmas public health plea from midlands doctor

Conor Ganly

Reporter:

Conor Ganly

Email:

news@leinsterexpress.ie

coronavirus covid-19

Dr Una Fallon, HSE public health midlands

The doctor leading the public health battle against Covid-19 in Laois and other midland counties has urgedthepublic to be vigilant as the virus spreads again.

Dr Una Fallon is the Director of Public Health for the Midlands.

“It is crucial that we remain vigilant when it comes to COVID-19. Covid-19 prevention measures, such as hand hygiene, distancing and using face coverings, will also help to protect us all from a range of winter illnesses, including the medically vulnerable.

“We recognise that people may feel tired but now is not the time to become complacent because Covid-19 is still circulating in the community and it will be many months before we notice the impact of the vaccine.

“We can now see the number of cases increasing once again so now is not the time to ease up.

“We need to remain careful and continue to observe public health measures until we can vaccinate a significant proportion of the population,” she said.

Dr Fallon made the appeal as part of a new Keep Well winter campaign.

“Our appeal in this campaign is for people to please remember – just this Christmas – Covid-19 has not gone away. None of us want an avoidable tragedy in our family. When you are planning your Christmas, try to avoid indoor gatherings especially ones where alcohol will be offered. If you are meeting indoors, keep the room well ventilated. Consider meeting outdoors or on-line. We know this is not easy but we are asking people to stay the course for another few months,” said Dr Fallon.

Key advice from Public Health to Stay Safe this Christmas:

• Enjoy the Christmas preparations and wear a mask in shops and on busy streets. Keep at least two metres distance at all times.

• When eating out, remain seated at your allocated table. Follow the advice given by the staff.

• Don’t bring Covid-19 shopping or visiting this Christmas! Stay at home and contact your GP if unwell.

• Wash or sanitise your hands regularly and encourage children to do the same.

• Every contact counts, limit your close contacts, especially with vulnerable family members.

• Ring ahead of the visit.

• Give me my space! Try to allow extra space between people at the dinner table.

• Air the room! Wherever people are gathered indoors, make sure the space is well ventilated.

• Enjoy the great outdoors! It is safer to meet outdoors and it is easier to keep physical distancing.