Covid-19 new cases surge in Portlaoise

Cases per fortnight more than doubled in Portlaoise local electoral area

Conor Ganly & Lynda Kiernan

Reporter:

Conor Ganly & Lynda Kiernan

Covid-19 new cases surge in Portlaoise

Map on Ireland's Covid-19 Data Hub shows higher rate of cases in Portlaoise Local Electoral Area between December 8 and 21.

New Covid-19 cases and disease incidence are surging in Portlaoise since the lifting of Level 5 lockdown restrictions, according to the latest official figures.

The latest Local Electoral Area (LEA) breakdown on the Covid-19 Ireland data hub covers December 8 to 21.

Data published this Monday reveals a rapid deterioration in Portlaoise while the situation has also worsened but to a lesser extent in the rest of the county.

The map also shows how Laois borders the Castlecomer LEA in north Kilkenny which now has one of the highest infection rates in Ireland.

There were 92 new cases in the Portlaoise LEA in the fortnight up to December 21. This is more than double the 42 cases recorded in the two weeks to December 14.

The incidence in what is the most populated electoral area of Laois had fallen to 40.9 in the two weeks to December 7 but has since jumped to a frightening 289.4 per 100k.

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.

The situation has also worsened in Portarlington Graiguecullen LEA in the 14 days with 48 new cases raising the incidence rate to 170.8 per 100k. There were 23 new cases in the previous reporting period.

The population in this LEA is 28,096. It includes Stradbally, Timahoe, Ballylinan, Ballyadams, Killeshin, Crettyard, Killenard, Ballybrittas. It borders Kildare, Carlow, Kilkenny and Offaly.

In the western area of the Mountmellick to Borris-in-Ossory LEA there were 24 new cases in the fortnight. The rate per 100 k is 96.7. There were 18 new cases in the previous report. The district is less populated, with 24,807 people and includes Rathdowney, Mountrath, Durrow, Castletown, Camross, Errill, Clonaslee and Rosenallis. It borders Tipperary, Offaly and Kilkenny.

All three districts border the Castlecomer LEA in Kilkenny where the situation continues to worsen. Its incidence rate has shot up to 462.2 per 100 k with 109 cases in the previous fortnight.

The Republic's overall incidence rate has risen to 209.6 after 9,979 new cases in the two weeks up to Christmas day.

Laois had 161 new cases in the two weeks to Christmas day, with an incidence rate of 190.1.